At a conference organised by the Gulf Reconstruction Liasion Group, Richard Rogerson of Cable & Wireless Plc outlined areas of opportunity for Western companies in the Kuwaiti telecommunications equipment market. The Gulf Reconstruction Liason Group is led by Mohyeldin International, a recently established consultancy to channel Western commercial intiatives following the Gulf War. In his […]
At a conference organised by the Gulf Reconstruction Liasion Group, Richard Rogerson of Cable & Wireless Plc outlined areas of opportunity for Western companies in the Kuwaiti telecommunications equipment market. The Gulf Reconstruction Liason Group is led by Mohyeldin International, a recently established consultancy to channel Western commercial intiatives following the Gulf War. In his introduction, chairman and founder Dr Karim Said, laid out the objectives of the conference as giving a clear picture of the contract opportunities in Kuwait. Rogerson began by pointing out that not only British Telecommunications Plc, which claimed to be the first company to restore international telephone links to Kuwait, but AT&T Co, MCI Communications Corp and Mercury Communications Ltd were all offering international call and data facilities, although not to the same quality or access standards as before the war. Rogerson said that the Kuwaiti Ministry of Communications was looking for a permanent method of providing international channels – it will shortly be going out to tender for a standard B earthstation for the Arabsat satellite. And he added, One assumes that further tenders will be issued for ground stations to work through the Intelsat satellites orbiting over the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. As the previous earthstation site will not be used, Rogerson reckoned that there would also be opportunities to provide backhaul links to Kuwait City from the new site – either by microwave or fibre optic cables. On the national telephone side, the exisiting L M Ericcson Telefon AB national exchange is being used to restore national service, although Rogerson noted that in the future there would be opportunities for management number systems, DQ systems and a comprehensive billing system. On customer apparatus, Rogerson warned firms that the choice of Kuwaiti agent would be very important as price delivery and on the ground technical support would be considered vital criteria as the actual technology being offered. Apart from international services, facsimile was the only area where Rogerson mentioned Cable & Wireless, saying that he thought its Surefax service would be of interest to business people returning to Kuwait. Italcable SpA was mentioned to have won a contract, but Rogerson pointed out that this was in telex and data, saying I personally expect telex to become practically non-existent. As well as restoring the national exchange, Ericcson is rebuilding the cellular system, which survived the war relatively unscathed. Dr Karim warned conference participants that Kuwait’s damage was initally over-estimated and there were now many firms chasing contracts, although there are many new contract opportunities in Kuwait, the ratio between the number of firms seeking contracts and the post-invasion contract opportunities is much higher than the ratio of bidders was to pre-invasion contracts. However he added that for those lucky enough to get them, the rewards from the contracts will be great.