Telenor Pakistan and Jazz have decided to pay a major portion of their license renewal fee while protesting against the unjust license renewal price, sources have confirmed.
Jazz will be paying around USD 291 Million while Telenor Pakistan will voluntarily pay USD 224.6 million under protest to safeguard the interest of its valued customers.
PTA had set the license renewal fee of USD 450 million for both the operators. Which, as per both the operators, is much higher than the original fee the companies had paid 15 years ago.
PTA, in a letter sent to both the operators, had asked them to clear the payments before August 21st, 2019 to avoid license suspension.
According to sources, Jazz will be paying USD 291 million as its obligation towards the license and to get the national exchequer rolling.
Telenor has stated that while it’s not in agreement with the license renewal fee, it’s clearing a major portion of the due payment in protest.
“In order to reaffirm its commitment to the country, Telenor Pakistan, while preserving its legal rights, has offered to make a substantial payment of USD 224.6 million to the government to ensure continuity of services and preserve rights of over 44 million valued customers”, said a statement issued by the company moments ago.
The GSM licenses of Telenor Pakistan and Jazz, which were to be renewed by 25 May 2019, had been delayed by PTA and faced further delays due to higher demands on pricing and rollout obligations, which could significantly distort the competitive landscape in the industry, according to the telecom operators.
“Telenor Pakistan has been very keen towards the timely renewal of its telecom license and, in the past two years, tried its utmost towards a fair and transparent outcome. The company’s efforts in this regard sought to not only provide seamless telecom and digital services to the people of Pakistan but also contribute to the national exchequer”, said the company.
Jazz made the decision to pay USD 291 million to keep its services up and running for over 60 million customers. “Despite major differences, the decision from Jazz to pay license fee is backed by the company’s commitment to Pakistan”, said an official of the company who wanted to remain unnamed.
Telenor Pakistan, on the other hands, said that it will continue to pursue its legal case to fully protect its rights available under law to have a final resolution on the matter.
The company remains hopeful for a fair outcome and looks forward to the government and PTA to fulfill their commitment to ensure fair competition and forward-looking policies and regulations.