Orascom Telecom Launches Mobile Network In North Korea

Posted Dec 15, 2008

Orascom Telecom is an Egyptian company that has launched an advanced phone network in North Korea.  This is interesting news because North Korea is one of the most tightest controlled nations in the world.  Orascom will be the first company to launch a hi-tech mobile network in North Korea.  Orascom will be investing $400 million in the mobile phone service in North Korea over the next four years.

“The prospect is to build a network that will accommodate the 22 million people in North Korea,” stated Naguib Sawiris, CEO of Orascom.  North Korea launched a basic phone network in 2002, but most of their citizens have been banned from using mobile phones.  Orascom is currently one of the top mobile providers in the Middle East and Africa.

Orascom’s telecomm system will be launched initially in Pyongyang and then will branch out from there.  Handsets will be sold at a price of around $700, beyond what most people can afford in North Korea.  Around 9 million North Koreans (40% of the total population) are in need of food support.