Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Telecom expansion has USOF to thank

Telecom expansion has USOF to thank

Telecom expansion has USOF to thank

The number of registered mobile SIM cards reached more than 21 million last year, up nearly 12 per cent compared to 2018, a Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia (TRC) report said.

The figures show that last year, the number of registered SIM cards provided by six mobile operators reached 21.63 million – up 11.63 per cent compared to 2018.

The number is equivalent to 133 per cent of Cambodia’s total population, which stands at just over 16 million.

The report shows that mobile internet usage also saw a rapid increase with 16.12 million subscribers using their mobile phones to access online content last year, an increase of 18.47 per cent.

Fixed mobile phone users declined by 35 per cent to 57,438 while fixed broadband internet subscribers grew to 224,104, 46 per cent rise.

It said the number of registered Facebook accounts also increased 29 per cent to 8.8 million last year.

Currently, six mobile companies are operating in Cambodia – CellCard, Metfone, Smart Axiata, qb, Seatel and CooTel.

TRC spokesman Im Vutha said on Wednesday that the growing use of digital services and mobile applications in smart phones was due to the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) policy.

The policy requires telecom operators to pay two per cent of their annual revenue into the fund each year, which is then used to build further telecommunication infrastructure in rural and deprived areas.

Vutha claimed the USOF ensures development of infrastructure and services in areas where companies might not otherwise invest, while also promoting research and fostering new talent in the industry.

“The cost of the internet is affordable due to the transparency of competition. The USOF has ensured that the government has been part of this success,“ he said.

Telecommunications providers are also looking to the future, with a few leading mobile operators in the Kingdom now conducting trials to launch 5G services.

The Royal Group, which owns CamGSM Co Ltd, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications in May last year to collaborate in the planning of the 5G rollout as part of the digitalisation of Cambodia.

On February 26, CamGSM showcased its progress in rolling out a 5G network, a move it said is essential for the Kingdom’s aspirations of becoming a digital economy.

In early July, 2019, Smart Axiata Co Ltd, Cambodia’s leading mobile telecommunications company, hosted the first 5G live trial showcase for its customers. Smart Axiata currently has eight million subscribers.


  • Tensions high ahead of historic Kun Khmer match up

    The long-awaited November 5 matchup between Kun Khmer legend Prum Samnang and Myanmar-Canadian boxer Dave Leduc has become the most anticipated fight of the year. The Wurkz Sena Kun Khmer promotion, which will be held at the Town Arena at Chip Mong 271 Megamall, will see six

  • Manet: Cambodia safe for travel

    Prime Minister Hun Manet acknowledged that Cambodia and China have cooperated to tackle internet scamming, fraud and other cross border crimes, but insisted that the “Kingdom of Wonders” is completely peaceful and safe. He welcomed tourists to come and explore its rich heritage. During a

  • UNESCO formally list Battambang gastronomy

    Battambang, renowned for its cultural heritage, has achieved a significant milestone as the first Cambodian municipality to join the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN). The UCCN unites nearly 300 cities prioritising creativity and cultural industries in local development plans and international cooperation. On World Cities Day,

  • Cambodia pivots to solar, wind energy

    Cambodia is planning a move towards solar and wind energy to meet its rising power demands, according to Minister of Mines and Energy Keo Rottanak. On the sidelines of the Singapore International Energy Week event held recently, Rottanak emphasised the urgency of diversifying Cambodia’s

  • Angkor causeway symbol of Cambodia-Japan ties

    In a historic moment marking another milestone in the 70-year-long diplomatic relations between Cambodia and Japan, King Norodom Sihamoni celebrated the formal inauguration of a causeway located to the west of the world-renowned Angkor Wat. While presiding over the November 4 ceremony, the King emphasised the

  • Manet calls for Cambodia’s railways to get back on track

    Prime Minister Hun Manet has instructed the relevant authorities to expedite studies into upgrades to the Phnom Penh to Preah Sihanouk railway line. He suggested that the maximum speed on the line should be increased to 80km/h, in order to expedite the transportation of