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Turkey hosts Free Telecommunication Operator Association’s 9th General Assembly

TELKODER participants in Ankara, Turkey. Photograph courtesy of Turksat.

The Free Telecommunication Operators Association’s (TELKODER) 9th General Assembly was held in Ankara.

At the General Assembly, which was held at the Ankara Chamber of Commerce (ATO) Congresium, Galip Zerey, Deputy Undersecretary of the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs, and Communication, said that Turkey supports the joint use of capacity of existing fiber infrastructure. He said, “With double installation of fiber it would cost roughly 20 billion dollars, but when a single fiber is installed costs reduce to 3.9 billion dollars.”

Deputy Undersecretary Zerey stated that his ministry will soon complete its broadband strategy and action plan along with Information and Communication Technologies Authority (BTK), which supports the joint use of capacity of existing fiber infrastructure.

Zerey stated that their target is to spread fiber optic infrastructure throughout Turkey. He also stated that the ministry wants to supply 1G fiber to every household and provide necessary fiber infrastructure for 4.5G and 5G.

The Deputy Undersecretary explained that the ministry is collaborating with the highway and railway authorities and added that it has been installing fiber along railway lines and that it is working with the highway authority to establish the same system.

Zerey noted that with the Electronic Communication Infrastructure Information System (EHABS), the existing fiber infrastructure will be introduced into the system and the new fiber infrastructure will be updated, thus making it possible to track Turkey’s fiber optic network and usage.

He also noted that the ministry supports the use of 4.5G domestic products, and added that the process for the completion of domestic base station tests are ongoing.

Zerey also pointed out the importance of cyber security issues, saying that foreign software is not solely within the Turkish government’s control, so for this reason domestic products should be encouraged.

Referring to the support given to AR-GE projects by the ministry, Zerey noted that about 50 projects  – especially in the cyber security, unmanned aerial vehicles, domestic satellites and the 5G fields – have been evaluated and endorsed, and that these projects will be made public in due course.

“It is important to cooperate and compete.”

Türksat Deputy General Director Abdulkadir Sener also spoke at the General Assembly, and stated that telecommunication is not just about infrastructure, that basically people want to be reachable and that they are more interested about how much it costs.

He added that in terms of Turkey’s geographic location the importance of communication increases with each passing day, Şener said that the value of communication became evident with the coup attempt on July 15th by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO)

Finally, Sener explained that the management of communication means the control of people and their lives, saying that, “It’s because of this we gave two martyrs on the night of July 15. That is why the power stations of Turkcell, Digiturk, Vodafone, Türk Telekom’s were trying to be seized. That is why it is inevitable for operators to cooperate and to share infrastructure. It is important to cooperate and compete.”

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