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Yahsat Partners with Etisalat Afghanistan to Offer Latest Broadband Internet Service

Abu Dhabi, May 23, 2011 – Al Yah Satellite Communications Company PrJsc (Yahsat), has signed an agreement with Etisalat Afghanistan to provide border-to-border high-speed broadband internet access throughout the country. YahClick is a breakthrough satellite broadband service that will provide reliable, uninterrupted and affordable internet solutions for consumers and enterprises at packages comparable to existing DSL services.

Afghanistan currently has a severe shortage of broadband capabilities, and this new service offering will provide access to advanced satellite internet technology at cost-effective prices. Unlike terrestrial internet services that require costly cabling infrastructure, satellite technology has an expansive geographic reach that is able to provide connectivity to underserved and remote areas to connect end-users.

Jassem Mohamed Al Zaabi, CEO of Yahsat and Executive Director of Mubadala Information, Communications and Technology, said: “In order for Afghanistan’s economic and social development to progress, it is essential for business and commerce to be supported with a solid information and communications technology infrastructure that enables efficient and cost-effective operations. Bringing increased connectivity to this region will actively support economic growth and improve the standard of living across the country.” “We are proud to be involved in a project that will offer the latest state-of-the-art technology in Afghanistan at the same time as it is being introduced in Europe,” he added.
Etisalat Afghanistan will be responsible for service provisioning, installation, billing, and customer service for YahClick customers in Afghanistan. Etisalat Afghanistan commenced operations in 2007, has becoming the fourth mobile telephone operator in the country. Within three years, Etisalat has invested more than $300 million in Afghanistan and currently enjoys the status of the fastest-growing mobile phone company in the country. Etisalat Afghanistan has more than 4 million subscribers and is currently providing voice and data services in all 34 provinces in Afghanistan.
Commenting on the announcement, Dr. Ali Asgharzadeh, Chief Commercial Officer (Enterprise) at Etisalat Afghanistan said, “As the country’s fastest growing telecom service provider, we are delighted to joining hands with Al Yah Satellite Communications for providing high speed broadband internet services to our customers throughout the country. We are proud to serve our subscriber base with state of the art technology and latest products and services, thereby enriching their lives. We shall continue to fulfill our promise to continuously deliver quality and provide our customer seamless connectivity every step of the way.”

He further said, “We are confident that combined with Yahsat and our existing terrestrial network, we shall be meeting the growing needs of our customers for increased internet connectivity, enabling us to deliver entertaining mobile broadband experience, far beyond anything that has been seen before in the country.”

Yahsat is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company, Abu Dhabi’s strategic investment company. Yahsat, which celebrated the successful launch of Y1A on April 23, 2011, has commissioned the launch of these two satellites to create regionally focused capacity to manage the region’s expanding requirements for government, commercial and consumer satellite communication services.

About Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat)
Yahsat, the United Arab Emirates-based satellite communications company and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), provides multi-purpose satellite communications services to commercial and governmental clients in the Middle East, Africa, Europe and South-West Asia. With a wide portfolio of voice, data, video and internet connectivity solutions, Yahsat satellites are designed based on market requirements and future applications. Yahsat is partnering with a consortium composed of EADS Astrium, Thales and Alenia Space to build a multi-purpose satellite communications system. Yahsat’s first satellite Y1A was successfully launched in April 2011 and Y1B is scheduled to launch by year-end 2011.

About Etisalat Afghanistan:

Etisalat Afghanistan is 100% owned subsidiary of Etisalat UAE. Etisalat is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world and the leading operator in the Middle East and Africa, headquartered in the UAE. Etisalat operates in 18 countries across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, servicing over 100m customers out of a total population of approximately 1.9bn people.
Etisalat Afghanistan started its operations in Afghanistan in August 2007. The company has invested more than US$ 300 Million in Afghanistan. The company is the fastest growing mobile phone company in Afghanistan while providing voice and data services in all 34 provinces with more than 3000 retail outlets in the country. Etisalat Afghanistan is providing unmatched connectivity to its customers through roaming agreements with 120 operators in 78 countries and company is also official mobile phone company of Afghanistan national cricket team.