Ufone, SCO sign roaming service pact for AJK, GB

Updated October 11, 2019

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After more than 10 years of providing roaming service to the Special Communications Organisation (SCO), the Ufone subscribers will avail the benefit of roaming service in AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan. — Reuters/File
After more than 10 years of providing roaming service to the Special Communications Organisation (SCO), the Ufone subscribers will avail the benefit of roaming service in AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan. — Reuters/File

ISLAMABAD: After more than 10 years of providing roaming service to the Special Communications Organisation (SCO), the Ufone subscribers will avail the benefit of roaming service in AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan.

The SCO, state-owned telecom service provider in Azad Jammu Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, on Thursday signed a bilateral roaming services agreement with Ufone at PTCL headquarters.

The agreement will allow the Ufone users to access voice and SMS in areas of AJK and the GB where only SCO operates.

While Ufone has been offering the same service to SCO subscribers in mainstream Pakistan since 2008, these users will have access to mobile data service too after the agreement.

The signing ceremony was attended by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority chairman Amir Azeem Bajwa, SCO Director General Ali Farhan and PTCL & Ufone President & CEO Rashid Khan apart from the senior officials from both sides.

All the mobile telcos — Ufone, Telenor, Jazz and Zong — operate in key urban areas of AJK and GB, but these companies have not expanded much of their networks in ruggedly remote and far-flung areas especially close to the LoC.

The AJK government data show that around 500,000 tourists visited the Neelum valley in 2018 but there is no mobile telephony by the mobile service providers and purchasing an SCO SIM card demands lengthy formalities for the visitors.

Published in Dawn, October 11th, 2019