Line Extension

Feb 28. (LBO) — Sri Lanka’s cellular service pioneer Celltel picked up a ten year license extension to 2018, a company statement said on Tuesday. The Millicom International Cellular S.A subsidiary paid approximately US$ 5 million for the ten year extension, the statement said.

The license extension is also tied to a spectrum swap, where Celltell traded in part of its frequency in the 900 Mhz range for frequencies in the 1800 Mhz range.

President and CEO of Millicom Marc Beuls in Tuesday’s statement said œThe ability to exchange part of our current 900 Mhz spectrum for new 1800 Mhz spectrum will enable us to improve further the quality of the network.”

Celltel Chief Executive Duminda Ratnayaka told LBO that cellular operator had completed its last phase of expansion, increasing its installed line capacity to one million lines.

Ratnayaka said the network would expand further in 2006.

Memory Recall

Celltel pioneered cellular operation in Sri Lanka back in 1989. In 1995, it was issued a fresh 13 year license, expiring in September 2008.

With over 500,000 subscribers, Celltel is the island’s second larges