Chinese telecom equipment maker ZTE has has gained a USD400 GSM network infrastructure project in India, marking another major breakthrough of ZTE in the Indian market.

ZTE has won the contract from the Malaysian mobile operator Maxis for the GSM coverage expansion of its Indian subsidiary, Aircel. Aircel, as a subsidiary of the Kuala Lumpur-headquartered Maxis, is one of the top five mobile operators in India as well as a major private operator in the Indian market.

There are totally 11 mobile operators in India with Bharti Airtel, Reliance, BSNL, MTNL, Vodafone and Aircel as the major ones. Occupying total market share of 92%, the six operators have relatively equal shares of the Indian market and Bharti Airtel, the one with the largest share, rules no more than 23.6% of the market.

In May 2008, Maxis announced plans to invest USD4 billion to USD5 billion to extend its network in India from 2009 to 2010. So far, Aircel has 7,000 telecom towers and 11 million users in India.

ZTE says that as one of the few multinational operators that has realized the successful 3G operation, Maxis will become a close partner of ZTE and the two companies will implement further cooperation in the future.

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