A quartet of Japanese industry players including NEC and NTT Communications signed contracts to supply equipment and services for an expansion of state-owned operator Uzbektelecom’s infrastructure.

The move is funded by Japan Bank for International Cooperation, Nippon Export and Investment Insurance, and the MUFG Bank. It is part of the Digital Uzbekistan 2030 project, which aims to push the use of digital technology across the country’s economy.

Other players supplying equipment for the communications infrastructure project are Toyota Tsusho and Internet Initiative Japan.

The four players will kit out the operator’s data centres in the cities of Tashkent, Bukhara and Kokand, alongside expanding transport and data networks, and supporting an international data communication network.

In a joint statement, the providers noted the moves were “expected to significantly increase the speed, capacity and quality of the telecommunications infrastructure” with the ultimate aim of enabling the move to a digital economy.

Installation of the system is expected to be started later this year.