Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has not issued LDI license to CMPak, despite its approval from Cabinet Division and Policy Directive from Ministry of Information and Technology.
Apparently the authority is reluctant to issue the license due to Government’s understanding with Etisalat, under which Pakistan can’t issue any LDI license to anyone, after Etisalat took over 26 percent shares in PTCL.
However, CMPak’s case is little different, as the company existed even before Etisalat’s agreement with the brand name of Paktel, which latter started its GSM operations in Pakistan with brand name of Zong in February 2008 after it was fully owned by CMPak.
CMPak had applied for an LDI license, under which the Cabinet Division issued approval on September 24th, 2008. Subsequently, Ministry of Information Technology issued policy directives for license to PTA. However, company is still waiting for its license from PTA for last 2 months. Recently, the issue came under discussion when Chinese Ambassador discussed the matter with Minister Privatization, Mr. Naveed Qamar.
Zafar Usmani, Chief Operating Officer of China Mobile Pakistan has appealed to President Asif Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to intervene in view of the long-term friendship and close ties between Pakistan and China and instruct the Telecom Authority to issue LDI licence to China Mobile Pakistan.
While, we are still waiting for PTA’s clarification that it’s spokesman promised yesterday through an email.
It merits mentioning here that Zong is currently dependent on other LDI operators for long distance and international traffic.