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Tag Archives: SATRC

LIRNEasia@10 - LIRNEasia is celebrating its 10 year anniversary. Check out our timeline of events

What can regulators do (and not do) to encourage value-added services and mobile apps?

My second presentation at the SATRC policy workshop moved into contentious territory. I was preceded by Principal Advisor to TRAI, Mr Sudheer Gupta, who presented the TRAI recommendation that the new category they describe as “application services” be subject to a form of authorization at the cost of INR 15,000 and transaction costs. Sri Lanka’s […]

Some things regulators can do for sustainable broadband in South Asia

The South Asian Telecom Regulators’ Council (SATRC) is holding a policy workshop in Nagarkot, a scenic location about 90 minutes from Kathmandu. Sustainable broadband is one of their key focus areas. I was asked to do the lead presentation. My presentation was organized around the metaphor of chains. A chain is as strong as the […]

SATRC in the lead of freeing up 700 MHz frequencies for 4G

For most of its existence the South Asian Telecom Regulators’ Council (SATRC) has been a talk shop, not particularly noted as being on the leading edge of anything. Therefore I was very pleased to see that it is being cited as the pioneer in implementing the APT’s 700 MHz band plan that will provide enough […]

Low cost roaming in Bangladesh & Sri Lanka for Indian Airtel customers, but not vice versa

It’s been several years since we publicized the Zain innovation that brought down roaming prices in East Africa. No one picked up the inelegant workaround. Until now, when Airtel has sort of started the process. Indians traveling to Sri Lanka or Bangladesh will have one thing less to worry about. Airtel, which has operations in […]

Broadband QoSE findings presented at SATRC meeting, Tehran

LIRNEasia CEO, Rohan Samarajiva, was recently invited to the 12th  South Asian Telecommunications Regulators’ Council Meeting in Tehran, Iran, where he made presentations on intra-SAARC roaming charges (mentioned in this post) and broadband quality of service in the Asian region. LIRNEasia has been involved in broadband quality of service testing in the Asian region for a […]

Kneejerk response on roaming reforms

We were dragged into work on roaming by the SATRC. Our focus was on intra-SAARC call charges, but the then Chairman of SATRC, Mr Nripendra Mishra of TRAI wanted to act on both. So we started. We were more interested in intra-SAARC call charges because it affects more people, and more at the BOP. But […]

Assessing SAARC@25 by ability to communicate cheaply

Some people celebrate 25 years of anything: dead marriages, inert regional groupings, just occupying space. We don’t. SAARC must be assessed by its fruits. On internal connectivity it fails. Here’s the evidence, carried in op-ed articles in Bangladesh’s Daily Star, Sri Lanka’s Daily Mirror and also in a PTI dispatch: It is always easier to […]

Is SAARC real?

An organization called RIS (Research and Information System for Developing Countries) invited me to speak at a workshop celebrating 25 years of SAARC. I see nothing to celebrate, but came nevertheless because there is value in cross-fertilization and because it was time to apply some more pressure on changing the absurd international calling prices and […]

More talk on cheap talk

We were not optimistic about the telecom regulators actually doing something about lowering intra-SAARC phone prices more than one year after the SAARC heads of state said it should be done. The regulators show their independence when it comes to matters such as this. But the prices came down for LK-IN calls without any regulatory […]

Progress on lowering prices of calling among SAARC countries?

I wish the question mark was not necessary, but the record so far does not allow me exclude it. We started this process in the weeks before the 2008 SAARC Summit. When the issue was mentioned in the SAARC Chair’s speech and included in the Declaration, we were, naturally, pleased. I recall telling a journalist […]

More talk on intra-SAARC talk

The South Asian Telecom Regulators Council (SATRC) met in New Delhi 12-14 October 2008 and discussed among other things, the implementation of the SAARC Declaration commitment on reducing intra-SAARC voice telephony call charges. This is the policy memo we sent to all the SAARC regulatory agencies immediately after the SAARC Summit: Options for lowering intra-SAARC […]

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