Sehnaoui: We continue to spare no efforts to improve service and quality
We should be patient until the end of August

Hayek: Number of data subscribers exceeds 450 thousand on ALFA network,
daily surveys carried out on all Lebanon roads of to follow up and resolve problems
& new offer in August

Under the auspices and in presence of His Excellency the Minister of Telecommunications Nicolas Sehnaoui, Alfa, managed by Orascom Telecom, organized its annual Media Iftar in the of honor the press and media on Tuesday, on July 31st at Amareddine restaurant in Achrafieh. A bunch of Lebanese figures from the press and audiovisual media attended this Iftar as well as managers and advisers in the Ministry of Telecommunications along with the administrative body in Alfa.

After having expressed his best wishes for the holy month of Ramadan, Engineer Marwan Hayek, Chairman and CEO of Alfa spoke about the most important stages achieved by Alfa this year starting with the increase in Alfa subscribers that have reached 1.8 million active subscribers to date, and in parallel, the number of data subscribers (2G + 3G) has exceeded 450 thousands subscribers, pointing out that " so far more than 700 3G+ technical stations have been installed, including 70 stations only last week."

Hayek also spoke about the steps taken by the company to strengthen the transmission and network coverage "through the construction of new 158 transmission stations, distributed as follows: Mount Lebanon (60 stations), the South (38 stations), the North (27 stations), Beirut (16 stations), and the Bekaa (17 stations). Hayek also mentioned some of the problems the company faces with some of the municipalities and citizens regarding the installation of additional stations.

In addition, Hayek revealed that 50 legal repeaters were installed to replace the illegal devices which should enhance the quality of mobile voice services.

He also noted that Alfa has changed 125 old 2G stations while increasing the capacity of most of existing 2G stations, stressing that the technical teams are carrying out daily surveys on all the roads in Lebanon to monitor and solve problems.

Hayek drew attention to the fact that reality has three times exceeded expectations for the third-generation (3G +) project after studies have shown that 40% of our mobile phones are smart devices, compared to a global average of 15%, revealing at the same time that Alfa has installed the backbone network that links Beirut to the North and South and the Bekaa, which will allow us to meet more effectively subscribers requirements in terms of data and voice services.

On the other hand, Hayek said and given the importance of mobile applications nowadays for mobile users, Alfa was a pioneer in launching the first mobile application in the telecommunications sector in Lebanon –the Alfa MOBILE APPLICATION- last June for BlackBerry and Android-equipped devices. Hayek announced that this application will be available very soon for the iPhone and other smart devices. He also pointed out that the customers service center is keeping pace with the developments occurring at Alfa, “as we have increased the number of seats by 28%, going from 77 seats to 99, and we are working to increase this number to 130 seats, noting that the capacity of each seat is 3 employees."

Regarding the services launched by the company this year, Hayek spoke about the
U-Chat package designed exclusively for young people with rate reductions up to 72%, of which to date more than 130 thousand subscribers have benefited, not to mention the significant reductions on the Blackberry service, in full coordination with the Ministry of Telecommunications, a service which is now available for Alfa subscribers starting $1.9 per week. Hayek also noted that the company is technically ready for the launch of the “Mobile Internet Service Provider” service. As for the National Roaming service launched by Alfa recently, Hayek said that 6000 postpaid subscribers have benefited from this service in the first stage in the regions covered by this service, declaring that Alfa is ready to launch the second phase of the project, "which will include prepaid subscribers as well."

Regarding the next stage, Hayek announced the launch of new offers, with the first one being launched in August, in addition to working on completing expansion and coverage projects by increasing the number of stations to 850 3G+ stations and 200 new 2G stations, pointing out that all this movement, projects and developments in the sector have contributed in the creation of more than 500 job opportunities in the telecommunications sector, highlighting the fact that all of this progress would not have been achieved without the daily follow-up by the Ministry of Telecommunications and personally by H.E. the Minister of Telecommunications, in addition to the full support provided by the ministry, especially in terms of securing the necessary investments.

On the occasion of the holy month, Hayek also spoke about Alfa Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program "Alfa for Life," which continues to provide support to the associations that take care of children with special needs in communication, mentioning that this program represents and expresses the values that Alfa believes in as a company. He also thanked the media in Lebanon for the support it provides to Alfa, paying tribute to

the sacrifices made by the media and the press in Lebanon in order to deliver the right news especially as sometimes they sacrifice their lives in the name of the noble message of journalism. As this Iftar coincided with the Lebanese Army Holiday on August 1, Hayek concluded his speech wishing the best for the Lebanese Army and Lebanon.

Minister Sehnaoui
In his speech, HE Minister Sehnaoui spoke about the Quality of Service, pointing out that in all countries worldwide there is a specific acceptable rate for the quality of service. “In Lebanon, we have made great efforts to improve the service and we have made some progress although we have not yet reached this rate. For that reason, we continue along with the two mobile companies in Lebanon to spare no efforts to improve the service and quality in order to let it reach the average conventional level worldwide and to make it the service we all aspire to. We are still working on this aspect and we have to be patient until the end of August.”

He added: After this date we need to put in an inventory of all our achieved projects, or that we are in the process of implementing, and explain these to the Lebanese citizens, noting that the work that is being done one by one is a source of appreciation and pride.

Under the patronage of His Excellency the Minister of Telecommunications, Alfa honors the media and the press during its annual Iftar


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