Potraz fires starting gun on base station bids

19 September 2019

The Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) has invited bids for the construction of 100 mobile network base stations targeting unserved areas to expand network coverage.

In a tender statement issued in August, Potraz said qualified firms should submit their expressions of interest by September 20th, 2019 for the designing, construction and commissioning of shared telecommunications towers as well as  related infrastructure. 

The projects would be funded using resources from the Universal Services Fund (USF), a pool of funds contributed by companies in the telecommunications sector and meant for the development and provision of telecommunications in under-serviced areas.

“In pursuit of its mandate under the Universal Services Fund, Potraz intends to extend rural coverage by constructing 100 base stations in uncovered rural and remote areas in Zimbabwe,” said Potraz. “The base station passive infrastructure should accommodate the existing three mobile network operators and provide spare capacity for additional operators. The project is planned to be implemented as a turnkey vendor financed Build and Transfer joint venture agreement. The supplier undertakes the financing and construction of the project and after its completion hands it over to Potraz. Potraz reimburses the total project investment on the basis of an agreed schedule.”

A formal request for proposal will be issued following a review of the expressions of interest received – and qualifying interested parties will be notified to submit proposals for the project, the regulator said.