Smart Axiata joins NIPTICT to fund students

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Thomas Hundt, CEO of Smart Axiata and Sam Sethserey, the vice president of the NIPTICT signing the funding agreement. Supplied

Smart Axiata, a subsidiary of the Malaysia-based Axiata Group and one of the leading mobile operators in Cambodia, recently reached an agreement with the National Institute of Posts, Telecoms and ICT (NIPTICT) to fund the education of 10 students seeking an ICT-related academic degree at NIPTICT.

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Tram Iv Tek, the Minister of Posts and Telecommunications (MPTC) who presided over the signing ceremony on Wednesday, welcomed the new partnership between Smart and NIPTICT, saying it plays an important role in the development of the country’s ICT sector.

“I am pleased to witness this latest milestone between both parties. Smart has always been a strong partner of MPTC through numerous initiatives in the ICT sector,” he said.

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“This new collaboration will further develop local talent and generate more technology experts, as it’s envisioned in the Telecom and ICT Development Policy 2020,” he added.

Sam Sethserey, the vice-president of the NIPTICT, said that Smart has collaborated with the academic institution on countless occasions to improve education standards in the ICT field. In 2016, for example, Smart donated more than $350,000 to build a dormitory at the university with the capacity to house 100 students.

Smart is also a key partner in NIPTICT’s Cambodia ICT Volunteers Program and the Cambodia ICT Awards.

“We are delighted that Smart has expanded their SmartEdu Scholarship Program and given 10 ICT scholarships annually to students of limited means who would like to study at NIPTICT,” Mr Sethserey said.

“Through this programme, students will gain access to a host of initiatives and workshops that Smart is developing for young Cambodians.”

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Smart Axiata’s CEO Thomas Hundt said his company remains committed to promoting and strengthening education in the ICT field.

“That’s why we decided to expand SmartEdu this year. I hope this unlocks more opportunities for young talented Cambodians as they continue to study hard,” he said.

SmartEdu was launched in 2016 to assist underprivileged Cambodian students who wish to enter the ICT field. Beyond sponsoring annual tuition fees for academic degrees, the company also provides monthly allowances for the entire duration of the degree programme.

Smart has more than eight million subscribers in the kingdom. The company remains at the forefront of the industry, being the first telco to introduce 4G LTE, 4G+ and 4G+ with HD Voice (VoLTE) technologies in the Cambodian market.

Consolidating its data leadership position in the country, Smart launched its 4.5G service in mid-2017, ahead of the competition. Smart also provides 2G, 2.5G, 3G and 3.75G mobile services as well as international roaming across more than 190 countries.

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Its extensive nationwide network coverage reaches more than 98 percent of the Cambodian population.

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