INTERNATIONAL  - One British and two African companies are bidding to establish a fourth mobile phone voice service provider in Zambia in a tender closing next month, communications minister Brian Mushimba said late on Tuesday. 

Zambia approved a law in June allowing more mobile phone voice service providers to boost competition. The tender was supposed to close last week but was extended to December 18, because some of the bidders needed more time, Mushimba said. “Some of the interested parties came on board very late and for them to give a comprehensive report, they need to get on the ground and travel across the country,” Mushimba said. He said that the communications regulator was expected to select the winner by June 2018.

“We hope that the quality of service will improve," he said.