Egyptian mobile operator Etisalat Misr has set aside US$167.3-million to modernise its network, according to the company's president and CEO Hazem Metwally.
Metwally said the intention is to secure more revenue from internet services as the business works to offset the impact of a drop in subscriber numbers.
This sum is more than half of the amount (4.5-billion Egyptian pounds or US$251-million) the company plans to invest in Egypt in 2019.
The upgrade is expected to contribute significantly towards the operator's aim to achieve double-digit growth in revenue at the end of 2019.
In 2018, Etisalat Misr's revenue increased by nearly 16% to about 13.6 billion Egyptian pounds (about US$795-million).
The data segment accounted for about 30% of this income and the operator aims to increase this to 35% in the 2019 business year.
Metwally added that there is no immediate requirement for a new license. "At the moment we do not need new frequencies immediately, but we may need them in the future."
In October 2017, ITWeb Africa reported that Etisalat Misr entered into a four-year contract with Ericsson to modernise and expand its core network and business support systems in Egypt.
The contract covered preparation for the introduction of IMS Voice over LTE, Voice over Wi-Fi, Service Aware Policy Control and Unified Communications.
The upgrade is scheduled to be completed in 2021 and the understanding is that it will help prepare the company for growth in 4G, as well as help facilitate 5G and IOT application in Egypt.
Metwally said the partnership with Ericsson will play an important role in further developing the telco's services.
"We are pleased to be working with Ericsson again on a new project that addresses the evolving requirements of our organisation. It will double the capacity of our business support systems, which will allow us to provide more innovation to our customers, resulting in more traffic passing through our network."