Getting permission for deployment of LTE services without participating in next generation mobile services award (NGSMA) might not be as simple as it seems, hinted a statement issued by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority.
Statement from authority revealed that Chairman PTA Dr. Syed Ismail Shah held a meeting with Mr. Muneer Farooqui, CEO Warid Telecom in Pakistan to discuss the reports of Warid Telecom launching 4G services without participating in Next Generation Mobile Services Award (NGMSA).
Statement said that Warid has indicated that it does not intend to immediately launch such service, although the existing license of Warid is technology neutral, it would properly seek PTA’s consent.
Muneer Farooqui was quoted as saying “In order to compete with the market, Warid is exploring all the options to remain competitive. The existing license of Warid is technology-neutral, however he assured that all the PTA regulations, requirements and permissions will be taken into full consideration, as per license.”
He further added “With the shareholders’ support, Warid continues to remain committed to providing its customers with superior quality services. The company has always been at the forefront of serving the cellular needs of the people of Pakistan and would continue to be one of the most innovative cellular services providers.”
PTA, in response, maintained that it will look into request from Warid based on the license conditions and in the best interest of the cellular industry at large and the bidders participating in the 3G/4G spectrum auction.
Chairman PTA informed that offer of 4G/LTE services by the existing licensee will have to go through a process as per their license as well as requirements of assuring proper coverage and quality of service, enhanced monitoring requirements and commencement permission by PTA.
The Chairman also used this occasion to inform that auction of 23rd April 2014 will dispel all impression about lack of interest of bidders in 3G/4G spectrum.
He also assured the CEO Warid Telecom that as a regulatory body they would continue supporting Warid Telecom a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Group which is one of the largest foreign investor in Pakistan.