Econet to support up to 1.2 million subscriber by February 2007 - in Zimbabwe:

Zimbabwe's Econet says it is taking a long-term view of the future of the country and is therefore continuing with its expansion project despite congestion problems being caused by low tariffs and ongoing power cuts. In a statement, Econet Chief Executive Officer Douglas Mboweni said the company is going ahead with work started a few months ago to add capacity to the network and increase its subscriber carrying capacity from the current 800,000 to 1.2 million by February 2008.

He said the Econet board of directors had directed that there should be no suspension of the work to increase capacity even though the network is experiencing severe congestion due to low tariffs. In addition, power cuts have also affected service although the company has been installing diesel-powered generators to provide back-up power whenever there is no electricity.

"Our board's view is that we maintain a long-term approach to Zimbabwe despite the current problems of low tariffs which are causing congestion and power cuts," he said.

Meanwhile, in New Zealand...