British Telecommunications (BT) launched a series of initiatives Tuesday with a view to doubling the size of its business across Turkey, the Middle East and Africa. The UK operator, which last year generated revenues of £20 billion (Dh115.7 billion), plans to hire 170 staff across the three regions, as well as invest more in its infrastructure and network operations. BT did not disclose the value of its planned investments but said it would continue to work with a range of local clients including Emirates, Etihad Airways and Jumeirah Group. \"This is a growing region where we see great opportunities in terms of growth,\" said Luis Alvarez Satorre, BT\'s president of global services for EMEA [Europe, Middle East and Africa] and Latin America. \"We are looking to expand our network capability, increase our portfolio and hire more people in order to double the size of our business in the region. The initiatives involve increasing the number of nodes, or connectivity points, across the region as well as expanding our ethernet portfolio to reach 21 cities,\" he added. According to BT\'s research, the addressable market in Turkey, the Middle East and Africa was worth a combined £5.4 billion in 2011 with IT spending growth across those regions expected to top 10 per cent in 2012. \"The main investment is going to happen on the network front. As the company extends its global reach, it will benefit from all of the investments that we are making as a whole,\" Satorre said. Recruitment drive BT\'s regional recruitment drive has already begun with the company saying it wants to become the \"biggest telecoms operator in the region\". BT says it already serves around 600 large organisations in 170 countries. \"In Q3 [third quarter] we saw double digit growth in the Asia Pacific and Latin America regions and it is our aspiration to achieve that here,\" said Jeff Kelly, BT\'s chief executive of global services. \"More mature markets are not growing as fast so we anticipate that emerging markets will continue to play a larger part of the global services mix in the years ahead,\" he added.