ITU teams up with satellite consortium

  • Business
  • Wednesday, 08 Jan 2003

THE International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is partnering Inmarsat Ltd to help promote rural telecoms and support emergency communications in least developed countries (LCD). 

To this effect, Inmarsat, a London-based satellite consortium, would make 105,000 euros (RM399,000) contribution for the purchase of 15 global area network (GAN) satellite terminals to benefit the LDCs, ITU said in a statement. 

Cosmas Zavazava, the co-ordinator for the special unit of LCDs, said with disaster rising at a dramatic rate, and having particularly severe consequences in LCDs, a reliable and flexible telecoms resources were a must for humanitarian relief and assistance agencies to perform vital tasks. 

Inmarsat will participate in ITU’s inclusive, technology-neutral and technology-independent framework for cost-effective and global deployment of technologies to benefit LDCs. 

ITU will select the beneficiary countries and will contribute an amount not less than the value of the donated Inmarsat GAN terminals. 

Inmarsat GAN terminals are powered by lithium-ion battery and have a built-in base station that allows up to 12 cordless phones to be connected to form a cordless local phone network. In addition to the external line, up to five handsets can be used simultaneously to make free internal calls. 

Hamadoun Toure, the director of Telecommunication Development Bureau, said that to leverage on the potential of information and communications technology (ICT) for sustainable universal access, all measures should be taken to partner like-minded organisations “as we are doing now with Inmarsat Ltd to bring services to where they are most needed”. 

Raja Gopalan, Inmarsat’s director for land mobile and special services, said the company was pleased to make new technologies and capabilities available to least developed countries that often lack basic land line infrastructure. 

ITU is a global organisation that brings together governments and industry to co-ordinate the establishment and operation of global communications and network and services. 

It is responsible for standardisation, co-ordination and development of international telecommunications including radio communications, as well as the harmonisation of national policies. – Bernama 

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