India is adding one mobile phone user every second
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India is adding one mobile phone user every second

Friday, 15 December 2006, 06:00 Hrs
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New Delhi: India's mobile phone industry is expanding exponentially, adding one new subscriber every second to take the total telephone subscriber base to 250 million by 2007, Communications and IT Minister Dayanidhi Maran said.

"India's telecommunications industry is on a very high growth trajectory. We have already crossed the 185 million subscribers mark, and by 2007 India will have 250 million phone subscribers," the minister said at India Telecom 2006, inaugurated by President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam at the Pragati Maidan fairground here.

"Our mobile subscriber base is increasing phenomenally each year, adding almost six million new subscribers a month, which means one customer is added every second," Maran told the conference attended by the who's who of Indian telecom.

The conference is being organized by Ministry for Communications and Information Technology, in association with Federation of Indian Chambers for Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Telecom Equipment Manufacturers Association (TEMA).

Over 200 companies are participating in the exposition, including biggies like Bharti Airtel Limited, BSNL, C-Dot, Hutchison Essar Mobile Services Ltd, COAI, Qualcomm India Pvt Ltd and Reliance Communication Ltd.

Among the international participants are various small and medium telecom companies from Canada, China, Singapore, Hong Kong, Italy, Taiwan, South Korea and the United States.

"By 2010, India will have more than 500 million mobile subscribers from the current base which is more than 140 million," Maran said.

"This year we have already had investments of up to $17 billion in IT and telecom, of which $1.5 billion have been in telecom alone," the minister said.

He said an investment of $2 billion had been made in telecom manufacturing only. "And more investments are on the anvil."

However, Maran expressed concern over slow growth of broadband connectivity and said that one million more subscribers would be added to the current three million by the end of this fiscal.

Source: IANS
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