Source: Xinhua| 2019-01-25 00:56:20|Editor: Mu Xuequan

LUSAKA, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) — Zambia is set to complete the construction of hundreds of communication towers across the country ahead of schedule, a senior government official said on Thursday.

Brian Mushimba, Minister of Transport and Communication, said 400 communication towers will be constructed this year in addition to over 600 that were erected last year, translating into about 96 percent of having universal coverage of both internet and communication facilities in the southern African nation.

He said in a release that the project, which was supposed to have been completed in three years' time, will be completed ahead of schedule as the government was expected to build over 1,000 communication towers at the end of the year out of 1,009 that were expected to be completed in three years.

The communication towers were being constructed at a cost of 280 million U.S. dollars with support from China.

The Zambian minister said some funds would be sourced from the universal access funds to complete the last mile of the project, adding that the universal coverage of both internet and telephone will enhance communication facilities and meet the needs of citizen.

In August 2017, Zambia and China signed a framework agreement for the phase two of the construction of communication towers.