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Rebranded Zain plans to end Middle East roaming charges

01 February 2008

Kuwaiti-based operator Zain claims success for its One Network strategy in Africa, allowing Celtel customers across 12 nations to make and receive cross-border calls at local rates. Now it plans to introduce the scheme in Saudi Arabia and its other Middle East operators, says CEO Saad Al Barrak

Read more: Zain Celtel One Network Africa Kuwait MTC MTC-Vodafone

Saad Al Barrak: More than two million people have already used the One Network service. It is playing a crucial role in helping to promote and boost cross-border trade

We interviewed you two years ago, when you had 15 million subscribers in 19 countries. What are the current numbers, and how has that met your plans at that time?
Since we started operating in Kuwait as the region's first mobile operator in 1983 we have experienced strong growth. Through the disciplined implementation of our "3x3x3" expansion strategy in 2003, we have grown exponentially, becoming the fourth largest telecommunications company in the world in terms of geographic presence.
Our footprint covers 22 countries serving 42.4 million active customers across the Middle East and the African continent — as of January 2008.
We are on target to reach our ambitious goals of achieving 110 million customers and an EBITDA of $6 billion...