DSCN1434Fan Yunjun, CEO, CMPak Ltd., has emerged as an established brand in telecom networking besides proving his mettle in marketing and executive management. Holding a Ph.D. degree in engineering and carrying a 12-year rich diverse experience, Fan believes in team work as he realises that an individual can contribute a lot, but cannot build a great organisation. He plans to take China Mobiles investment graph in Pakistans mobile phone sector to new heights in future. During his recent interview with Technology Times, he spoke in detail about the telecom sector potential and future prospects

Technology Times: What is your professional background in the field of telecom?

DR FAN YUNJUN: I graduated from the China University of Post and Telecommunication and got a PhD degree there. I hope to contribute some new ideas for the telecom technology. Our company – China Mobile – provided me an opportunity for network planning, network optimization and network management. Then I was tasked for product development, business development and strategy amendment. Later, I was assigned marketing and sales sector, customer services, corporate service and call centres. Then our company promoted me as the head of the company. Now I realize that single people can contribute a lot, but cannot build a great organization; its a team work, the corporate governance, strategy, culture process system it should be there. I also cultivate my interest in the management.

Do you believe that an educationist can run an organization better than any other person?

I believe, wherever you come from, if you are ready for the human being, you are the fast learner. Also you are a real team player with great vision. Actually you can do anything. Leader can come from everywhere.

How science and technology can play its role in the progress of a country?

I believe, the first thing is planning. The government should have integrate and systematic planning. I think Chinas advantage is its sustainable planning. Every five years you can check five-year planning and rolling planning in next five years. So that means, after these five years, 10 years, 15 or 20 years, they have the long-term vision and direction. The second factor of progress is the national policy. The policy fully supports entrepreneur, innovator, the key contributor for the science and technology. You know, previously our telecom industry was also not very strong and the world companies like Ericson, Nokia, Siemens, Motorola were the big players. But now Huawei has become the second major company and I hope in near future it will become top company of the world. Similarly, ZTE is also now big player in the world. It is an established fact that science and technology play very important role in the national progress.

In China everything is being taught in Chinese. Dont you think that language is barrier to promote the talent in Pakistan?

I agree with you. Actually I think language is big advantage of Pakistanis. The entire English speaking community is very strong. Today is the knowledge based society and a lot of knowledge is in English. So if you can use English, it is big strength. For China we indeed face some language barrier. A lot of our information is in Chinese, but all the information, knowledge from the developed country is in English. So fortunately I think our Chinese government should have promoted English decades before. Now the English level of our young generation is better. So, I believe this barrier will be reduced now.

How did you find Pakistan for business?

Pakistan has a big potential. It is number 6 population in the world and also the 25th economic body in the world. On the other side, I think all the supporting systems still need further improvement including policy and tax. The policy sector should be refined further to achieve the desired goals of developments.

Do you perceive that Pakistan is not getting much foreign investments due to security reasons. Is this true?

Such perception is there, but I think the situation is not so worse. After my arrival in Pakistan, I found this country much better. I believe maybe a lot of countries misunderstand Pakistan and its people.

Why OPEX is higher in Pakistan than European countries, while labour is cheaper?

For example, for our base station, in other countries they dont need to hire security guards, they dont need to install the DG (diesel generator), and they dont need re-fueling. You are right, but it is the situation here in Pakistan.

Do you have any plans to invest in alternative energy solutions?

Yes, we have installed more than 400 BTS sites with solar power. Now we will innovatively launch our new technology and   improve the power consumption further  in order to become the environment friendly enterprise.

How much is the saving of energy on an average BTS?

It is 40 to 50 per cent saving of energy.

Are you satisfied with the role of PTA for the policies and regulations?

I think the PTA has done a lot of good jobs for devising regulations. Pakistan during the past several years has good growth rate in the telecom sector. It has also developed the SOP to register CNIC of each customer including pre-paid. Now register all ID of retail for the security. I think on this side they have done great job actually.

How we can resolve the issue of illegal SIMs?

For illegal SIM, actually we have done a lot of good jobs – just like the pre-789 and post-789 system for SIMs verification in addition to the NADRAs database 668. Next time our plan is to further support the government to control illegal handsets. We can be very proactive to cooperate with the government to control illegal SIMs. Our media and government should realize which level we can reduce or eliminate illegal SIMs. In the world until now no operator or government can guarantee 100 per cent on illegal SIMs. Just like we cannot 100 percent get rid of criminals. So, I think we must respect this fact. Otherwise any single illegal SIM will become a big issue, and it will also bring new issues. Maybe only one single person is wrong, but all good people will also suffer. I think this fact we must respect. Secondly, security is a entire systematic engineering including telecom, also including police, interior force, social network, socio-eco system. So that means only focus on one element cannot solve all problems.

What is the volume of illegal SIMs?

I think it depends on how we give the definition of illegal SIM. If we think we develop a mutual grade SOP by PTA. If the agreed SOP is followed for verification, then it is a legal SIM.

What policy change do you suggest for the improvement of telecom sector in Pakistan?

First of all, we should understand that telecom is not only an industry, but also a very important infrastructure. If we really keep this in mind I believe the policy-making will become easier. If we really treat it as an infrastructure then we know we should set up positive interaction. The government policy should be further supportive in order to strengthen the telecom industry which is the real enabler for all industries.

What is hinders in launch of next generation technology in Pakistan and which technology is better for Pakistan, 3G or 4G?

I think it depends on the level of readiness. The 3G or 4G I believe, this time it should be technology neutral solution. So you can either use 3G or 4G, but it depends on the ecosystem and readiness.

What will be the choice of Zong for next generation technology?

Actually it is a little confidential. We are researching on this issue. But I believe we should be the innovator and the contributor to our counsel.

What are your plans for next generation technology? Would it be carpet coverage or limited for certain cities?

The gap between customer need and what the operator can provide is there. I believe also we should consider the operators concern. If the policy is good enough supportive, then why not to further extend their footprint coverage to provide most of it to our people. I think it is their duty to serve more and more people. So far in future we will integrate our network to base on customer requirement to give the seamless continuity of service. So I believe, in future you will see what is our deployment and what is our service. We are working very hard to improve our service and network and our product.

Do you think 2.5G which is currently running in Pakistan, is working on its full potential?

I think the current technology for mobile internet is still not enough. Why is the limitation of technology and the spectrum? I believe in future we need more spectrum and also need the higher spectrum efficiency technology. So, the advanced technology should be in place. Now mobile is replacing fixed line. So in the future I believe more and more demand on wireless, and mobile broadband, mobile internet, wireless internet is the need of customer. So, I believe we need some new technology to support customers needs.

What are your comments about Technology Times?

It is really a good publication which covers a wide range of especially telecom sector. It has emerged as a major instrument in creating awareness about the modern researches and the potential of the local telecom sector for future progress. You and your team deserve all acclaim for launching such an effective publication.

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