Bangladesh’s government proposed simplifying regulations by introducing a single spectrum licence for mobile operators to replace separate permits for each mobile technology, The Daily Star reported.
The country’s seven operators currently have separate 2G, 3G and 4G licences expiring in 2026, 2028 and 2033 respectively.
The consolidated licences would expire in 2033, with operators required to pay additional fees for the 2G and 3G licences to be extended to match the expiry data for the 4G licences, which were issued in February 2018, the newspaper said.
The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) also proposed calculating spectrum charges based on an operator’s subscriber base.
SM Farhad, secretary general of the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh, welcomed the move and said “we appreciate the initiative. It will be guiding the future investment in the sector and will be impactful for the next 15 years”, The Daily Star wrote.
While Banglalink said in a statement it appreciates the initiative, as it will help simplify documentation and operational activities, it noted the proposal was not really a unified licence but a consolidation of existing ones, the newspaper reported.
Banglalink, the third largest operator in the country, said it expects Bangladesh to follow the global trend of introducing licences which allow a licensee to provide any service, adding that the new regime must be compatible with future technologies.
BTRC opened a public consultation on the proposal, which closes on 31 August.