Du CEO calls for increased internet competition

Increasing competition across fixed line and internet access is now the number one priority for the UAE's second telecom, as it looks to build on its mobile customer base.

Tags: Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company United Arab Emirates
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Du CEO calls for increased internet competition SULTAN: ISP competition on its way.
By  ITP.net Staff Writer Published  October 20, 2009

Increasing competition across fixed line and internet access is now the number one priority for the UAE's second telecom, as it looks to build on its mobile customer base.

Du CEO Osman Sultan describes opening up competition on fixed internet access as "the next big thing" now that Du has established itself in the mobile sector. "We all know that the focus is on mobile, and the headlines are on mobile," Sultan says. "I think we've earned our position in mobile now; we are a player in that field. We drove competition and I think we can shape the market in a positive way."

Sultan says that the next phase in the telecom sector in the UAE will be to drive competition nationwide, but he says that for Du to be able to do this, it needs to access customers across the entire nation.

"No way will there be duplication of the infrastructure - it doesn't make sense to have duplication in infrastructure in that field, so it's about accessing Etisalat's infrastructure and Etisalat accessing our infrastructure," Sultan says.

The Du boss is reluctant to predict exactly when customers in the UAE will be able to choose their internet service provider, but he says he is keen for it to happen sooner rather than later.

"I don't have full visibility, but what I can tell you is we will see something happening in 2010, for sure.

"I would like to see this as soon as possible. I would like to be able to start competing on the non-mobile front in the entire country," he adds. Competition in the mobile sector increased last week when Du sealed a deal with Apple to sell the iPhone in the UAE.

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