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Category Archives: Bangladesh

Big brother to watch social media in Bangladesh

Bangladesh has ceremoniously celebrated the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day on May 17. The day also marked eight months of shutting down of YouTube in the country. Now the authorities have decided to take over the command control of social media. Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu at a media call on the same day […]

BTRC has arbitrarily bagged $31m (so far)

While renewing the 2G mobile licenses in November 2011, the authorities had mandated that each mobile operator pays 1% of gross revenue to Social Obligation Fund (SOF). It is just a version of Universal Service Fund. By far four out of six operators have paid Tk. 2.4 billion (US$31 million) to Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, […]

Court decides if BTRC is naïve or A2I is crook

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) and Access to Information (A2I) project, being blessed by the Prime Minister’s Office, are blaming each other on the controversial allocation of 800 MHz spectrum to Ollo. BTRC said, according to a report of Dhaka Tribune: “I have gone through the matter and found that there were no irregularity on […]

Thimpu ascends with LTE and Dhaka slips with 3G

Bhutan Telecom is launching Long Term Evolution (LTE) service in two locations of its capital city Thimpu. Coverage of this 1800 MHz network will encompass a radius of up to 1km, promising a theoretical downlink speed of up to 40Mbps. Cellular News reports. Meanwhile, the fate of 3G in Bangladesh looks as gloomy as its […]

Renesys presents resilience of Internet in Bangladesh

Bangladesh is connected with the world through only one submarine cable system (SEA-ME-WE4). Nearly four months back, Douglas Madory of Renesys Corporation has analyzed the significance of terrestrial cables for the backup of Internet. He wrote: The Internet of Bangladesh has been connected to the world by a single submarine cable, Sea-Me-We 4 (SMW4), since […]

Policy & regulatory actions to help achieve Digital Bangladesh

Today I delivered the keynote at well attended workshop on how the Telecom Sector could contribute to Digital Bangladesh. It was organized by the Bangladesh Enterprise Institute. Attendees included the Ministers of Post and Telecom, ICT and Information. The Chair of BTRC and the Secretary of the Ministry of ICT, a key actor in Bangladesh’s […]

Graphic evidence of consequences of not paying attention to redundancy: Bangladesh’s international connectivity

LIRNEasia and its people have been intimately involved in the spurts and starts of the policy discussion on Bangladesh’s international connectivity. We were early in pointing to the need for an additional cable, pointing to the multiple vulnerabilities created by the single undersea cable controlled by the government-owned BTCL and the non-ring architecture of the […]

BTRC keeps BTCL above the law

The decline of telecoms tariff has been a universal trend. State-owned BTCL has, however, decided to double the monthly line rent and increase the call charges across the board. And they did it without giving a damn to the regulator. The usually rowdy BTRC is unusually calm about BTCL’s blatant noncompliance: The (BTRC) officials said […]

Mixed messages from Bangladesh regulator

For too long the government of Bangladesh has hesitated to accept the fact that the only realistic way a majority of its people can be connected to the Internet is over wireless media and has tended to treat the mobile industry as a cash cow to be taxed in order to fund Digital Bangladesh and […]

BD redefines broadband while LK sets cruise control

Bangladesh has raised its broadband bar from 128 Kbps to 1 Mbps, said a press report. Time will answer if it’s a political statement or an official roadmap. But the government’s prejudice on technology is alarming. The whole country should be connected through optical fibre cable. We want to provide broadband to all corners of […]

WCIT 2012 and the “forgetful” Bangladesh

Bangladesh delegate, led by BTRC chairman Mr. Sunil Kanti Bose, left for Dubai on December 2, 2012 late afternoon to attend WCIT 2012. On that very morning the telcos and ISPs were invited to “Consult” the stance Bangladesh would take on the revision of ITRs. Different links pertaining to the conference were emailed but nothing […]

With four days to go Bangladesh government consults on WCIT

When I gave a talk a few months back at RMIT in Melbourne about how we engaged governments with policy-relevant research, a senior person in the audience said that we seemed to be having greater success in getting the government of Bangladesh to pay heed to evidence than they did in Australia. Proving him half […]

Bangladesh is undecided on the fate of Internet

There were lots of political fireworks when Bangladesh got elected as one of the Council Members in ITU two years back. I welcomed it cautiously. Because, I am aware of the institutional incompetence of Bangladesh in contributing as a Council Member in the ITU. I kept asking the officials in BTRC and MOPT about their […]

Paper on perverse incentives created by the Bangladesh ILDTS policy

The paper was presented at the ITS India conference early this year. Somehow, we neglected to do a post about it. But, better late than never. Here it is. A subsequent revision of the ILDTS in late 2009 failed to address the concerns raised in this paper. Instead the focus of the revision was mainly […]

Bangladesh 3G: Five operators; four licenses, floor price of USD 20 million per MHz

One more qualified bidder than number of slots is a prescription for a bidding frenzy. But then, something like this has been done before. In the UK they had one more slot than there were existing operators. The consequences of being the only 2G operator who failed to get a 3G license drove up the […]

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