Cambodian telecom companies are scrambling to jump on the 4G bandwagon and tap into the Kingdom’s growing mobile internet usage, as front-runner Smart announced last week that its 4G LTE network now spans across the whole country. Thomas Hundt, CEO of Smart, which is the only provider of 4G LTE services, said the decision to expand its network was consumer-driven, as even smaller provinces wanted access to high-speed mobile internet.
Internet provider Ezecom said it would help build the Kingdom’s first undersea communications cable, a long-delayed project that was originally announced in 2013 and slated for completion at the end of last year. The construction of the Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand cable will “bring faster, more affordable broadband to the people of Cambodia and connect the country to the rest of the world like never before”, a company statement released yesterday reads. The contract is to be signed through Ezecom-owned group Telcotech with Telkom Malaysia and Thailand’s Symphony Communication on Monday.
CHINA’S Huawei Marine Networks, a global submarine network provider, said yesterday that it won a bid to build the Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand (MCT) undersea cable system. Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Cambodia’s Telcotech and Symphony Communication of Thailand are the members of the consortium. Spanning around 1,300 kilometers, the MCT cable system will connect Cherating in Malaysia and Rayong in Thailand with a branching unit connecting from the main trunk into Sihanoukville in Cambodia, Huawei said in a statement.
TELEKOM Malaysia Bhd (TM) said it has signed an agreement with Symphony Communication of Thailand and Telcotech of Cambodia to form a consortium to build a Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand (MCT) submarine cable system. The cable system will adopt 100 Gigabits per second (Gbps) upgradable technology with a design capacity of at least 30 terabits per second. The system is expected to be ready for commercial traffic by the end of 2016, TM said in a statement.
China’s Huawei Marine Networks, a global submarine network provider, said on Monday that it won a bid to build the Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand (MCT) undersea cable system. Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Cambodia’s Telcotech and Symphony Communication of Thailand are the members of the consortium. Spanning approximately 1,300 km, the MCT cable system will provide connectivity between Cherating in Malaysia and Rayong in Thailand with a branching unit connecting from the main trunk into Sihanoukville in Cambodia, Huawei said in a statement, adding that access to neighboring counties such as Laos and Myanmar will be achieved through further connection to terrestrial based networks.
Posts and Telecommunications Minister Prak Sokhonn estimated Monday that the number of Internet users in Cambodia would reach 9.5 million by 2020. Mr. Sokhonn said the estimate was made by extrapolating from annual figures showing growing rates of Internet use in the country, as well as by taking into consideration the increasing number of ways people can now access the Web.
On its announcement issued this week, Beeline unveiled that Sotelco Ltd, ex-owner of the Beeline Cambodia trademark, is to stop involving in the operation of the network. As from March 24, Beeline scratch cards will become invalid and all current sim cards will be shifted to Metfone system, the company declared. Beeline users will benefit from the takeover as they can access to their new provider’s advanced services such as 4G technology.
ALCATEL-Lucent and telco operator Chuan Wei are set to deploy Cambodia’s first 100 gigabit-per-second fibre-optic data network as the country invests further in its communications infrastructure to meet increasing demand for ultra-broadband access. With Cambodia’s economy growing at more than 7% annually, the country is becoming a key business hub for South-East Asia, Alcatel-Lucent said in a statement.
Metfone, Cambodia’s largest mobile phone provider by subscribers, will absorb Beeline, which has struggled to gain a foothold in the country’s fiercely competitive telecoms market, Beeline announced Thursday in a statement posted to its Facebook page. Beeline, whose parent company is Sotelco Ltd., was purchased by Cambodian businessman Huot Vanthan in 2013 from Amsterdam-based VimpelCom Ltd. Metfone is a subsidiary of Viettel, which is wholly owned by the Vietnamese military.
Nearly 4,000 businesses registered with the Ministry of Commerce in 2014, a 29 percent gain over the year before, figures provided Monday by the ministry show. According to the ministry, 3,850 businesses registered last year, up from 2,986 in 2013. Trademarks registered with the ministry rose from 5,866 in 2013 to 6,075 last year—4,829 of which were foreign.
The Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) on Thursday inaugurated its new headquarters on Phnom Penh’s Street 106, which was renovated at a cost of $4 million in order to house the struggling bourse. The CSX moved its operations from the 25th floor of the nearby Canadia Tower to the French colonial-style building in September—three years after it launched —but waited until Thursday to officially open its new offices.
The Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) saw its trading value fall from about $3.4 million in 2013 to just over $3 million last year and its trading volume drop from about 2.2 million shares to less than 1.8 million over the same period, according to CSX spokesman Lamun Soleil. Mr. Soleil conceded that the numbers indicated waning interest in the country’s stock market.
The majority of Cambodia’s financial institutions on Monday signed a nonbinding code of conduct that aims to increase customers’ awareness of their rights at a ceremony at Phnom Penh’s Intercontinental Hotel. The standards relate to issues including privacy and information disclosure, such as a customer’s right to hold a private PIN number and to know the conditions of a loan.
As part of an ambitious plan to rebrand one of Cambodia’s smallest mobile phone operators, a Hong Kong-backed telecommunications firm plans to invest $400 million over the next two to three years to construct the country’s fastest 4G network, the company’s general manager said Monday. Singapore-registered Southeast Asia Telecom Group has already spent $100 million in the hopes of transforming its subsidiary, Southeast Asia Telecom (Cambodia) Co. Ltd. (Seatel), into a major player in Cambodia’s mobile market, according to Han Hanchou, general manager of Seatel and president of Southeast Asia Telecom Group.
The Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) presented two new trading tools to the public Thursday to speed up transactions and entice greater interest in the country’s lackluster bourse. From Monday, stock traders will be able to use continuous trading and trading before settlement services. Continuous trading will allow investors to perform trades at any time during the two-hour trading session—between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.—and respond to real-time stock price changes rather than wait for the allotted execution window, which currently occurs every half hour.
Microfinance institution Sathapana Ltd. and its majority stakeholder, Maruhan Japan Bank, announced Tuesday that they would merge to form Sathapana Bank in the first consolidation of its kind in an increasingly competitive finance sector. Sathapana Ltd. CEO Bun Mony, who will also be CEO of the new firm, said that—subject to approval by Cambodia’s central bank—Maruhan and Sathapana will combine their respective assets of $200 million and $350 million.
Cambodia and Singapore signed an agreement last week to allow companies and individuals who register their ideas for patent protection in either country to have them recognized by both. Cham Prasidh, minister of industry and handicrafts, and Tan Yih San, chief executive of the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS), signed a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday that will see mutual recognition of patents and industrial designs registered in either country, IPOS said in a press release Friday.
Panasonic Solutions Expo opened today at the Sofitel Hotel; the first big scale, centralised showcase of the company’s full suite of technology, business-to-consumer (B2C) products and business-to-business (B2B) solutions for the Cambodia market. The Expo spans across six experiential booths – Corporate Branding, Residential, Energy Solutions, Hotel, Education and Store – to bring about ‘A Better Life, A Better World’ for consumers and business partners.
Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday called on state agencies to help lower electricity costs for consumers around the country and proposed a scheme to prevent landlords from gouging workers by fitting more rented rooms with their own meters. At the inauguration of the 338-megawatt Lower Stung Russey Chrum hydroelectric dam in Koh Kong province on Monday, Mr. Hun Sen asked state power provider Electricite du Cambodge (EdC), the Mines and Energy Ministry and the Phnom Penh municipal government to work together to ensure landlords are not charging workers inflated electricity rates.
Cambodia’s total trade volume reached $18.1 billion last year, a 13.8 percent increase over $15.9 billion the year before, with the country’s trade deficit widening by more than half a billion dollars, according to the Commerce Ministry and state media. A Commerce Ministry report released on December 30 says Cambodia exported $7.69 billion worth of goods in 2014, up from the $6.9 billion state news service Agence Kampuchea Presse reported the country exported in the previous year.