Millicom committed to investing $250 million in Panama between 2021 and 2022, funds due to be used to create a new fintech hub, improve mobile and fixed coverage, and help the government with its ambitions to close the country’s digital divide.

The move was announced following a meeting between Millicom CEO Mauricio Ramos (pictured) and the country’s President Laurentino Cortizo Cohen and involves Tigo Panama investing in modernising fixed and mobile networks with a focus on capacity and speed, along with expanding TV and internet services.

In addition, the operator will boost coverage throughout the country, a move incorporating areas which struggle with accessing connectivity including the provinces of Bocas del Toro, Darien, and Cocle. Millicom explained this would contribute to a government goal of closing the digital divide and creating a more inclusive society.

As part of the investment, Millicom will also create a Tigo fintech hub, focused on the expansion of mobile financial services for the entire region, and use its Tigo Money platform in the country.

President Cohen noted the decision to modernise networks impacted 800,000 citizens, 200,000 of which had no coverage.

“Millicom’s presence here today confirms the great effort by Panamanians to be facilitators of good investments that bring better opportunities to Panama,” he said.

Ramos highlighted Millicom had added 78 mobile network sites as of May, taking coverage to 450,000 people, and it planned to add a further 143 sites in H2.

The CEO said the company and government shared the same ambition “to bring progress to all corners of the country and promote sustainable digitalisation of Panama”.