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Sri Lanka and India: The substance of agreement

It has been an unfortunate fact that Sri Lanka and India have signed many agreements that have not been implemented. This caused me to write a column some years back entitled “An MOU to implement MOUs.”. The one difference that I see in the short LBO report on cooperation between India and Sri Lanka on telecom is that the word MOU has been replaced by agreement.

But I hope I am wrong and that there will be real implementation. A low-hanging fruit is bilateral lowering of roaming charges and termination charges for calls from Sri Lanka to India and vice versa. We have been waiting for SAARC to implement these things, much easier if India and Sri Lanka show how it can be done.

Sri Lanka and India have signed an agreement to set up a mechanism of technical and institutional cooperation in telecommunications. It aims to develop telecommunications in both the countries particularly in the areas of technology and access to telecommunication services, a statement from the Indian High Commission said.

The deal covers oversight of service provision, convergence, next generation networks, new technologies, spectrum issues, number portability, and economic regulation, it said.

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