Economy, Sci & Tech

Iran Offers Telecoms Opportunities

Iran Offers Telecoms Opportunities
Iran Offers Telecoms Opportunities

Opportunities in the Iranian telecoms market are expected to open up quickly, anticipated a panel at Capacity Middle East 2016 on Thursday.

Panelists were extremely positive about both the international opportunity presented by Iran, in addition to the high growth potential of its telecoms market, Capacity Media reported.

Iran began publicly raising the profile of its telecoms market to the international carrier community late last year, after international sanctions were lifted on the country, with dozens of mobile virtual licenses up for grabs.

Interest in the market has since grown enormously, with Telecom Italia Sparkle earlier this year becoming one of the first carriers to publicly partner with Telecommunications Company of Iran.

"We are very happy to be a part of Iran’s growth and we are positive about what we are seeing," said Alessandro Talotta, chairman and CEO at TI Sparkle.  

"TIC really wants to open up the market and bring value. I believe now is the time and that the international community understands it," added Amr Eid, chief customer officer at Telecommunications Infrastructure Company.  

Vahid Salman, director general of economic analysis at TIC, said the country maintained strong ties with carriers even during years of isolation.

"The sanctions were never on telecoms, but on money transfer[s], so we had a good relationship with the carriers already, and in the last two years we improved the infrastructure of the country," he said, stressing that "Iran has potential to become a hub for the region".

Salman showcased the country’s transit opportunities to delegates, highlighting its 22 cross-border gateways. He also announced that Iran is establishing a landing station for subsea cables in Chabahar Free Trade Zone.

It is hoped the landing station will help attract additional subsea cable capacity to the country, while offering an alternative to existing landing points in the Persian Gulf.

During the panel discussion, it was also revealed that TIC has 1.2 terabytes per second capacity available on its backbone, which it hopes to grow to 6 tbps over the coming years.

Salman did not believe there was presently a business case for introducing an alternative backbone provider to TIC in the Iranian market.