International telecoms licensing in Bangladesh

Posted on October 21, 2007  /  0 Comments

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) will auction licenses to operate two interconnection exchanges (ICX) and three International Gateway (IGW) facilities on November 22.

Outbound PSTN and mobile calls will first terminate in the ICX. Then the calls will be processed in the IGW followed by getting routed to overseas via BTTB’s submarine cable station. Similar path will be followed for the inbound overseas calls.

Foreign investments and joint ventures are strictly prohibited. Even the non-resident Bangladeshis are not eligible to invest.

Incumbent private operators (PSTN, mobile and ISP) are not allowed to apply for the IGW and ICX licenses. But the state-owned BTTB gets both the licenses. The newly enacted international lonng distance telecoms policy mandates these conditions.

Prof. William Melody, Arno Wirzenius and Anatul Fateh have detected numerous inconsistencies in this initiative. Their comments were published Sunday.

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