Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has adopted a policy decision to audit international gateway, interconnecting exchange, international internet gateway and internet service providers like it audits the mobile phone operators.
The decision was made at a recently held meeting of the commission, which was presided over by its chairman Shahjahan Mahmood, an official of the commission told New Age.
At present, there are 25 international gateway (IGW) service providers, 26 interconnecting exchange (ICX) service providers, 37 international internet gateway (IIG) service providers and 499 internet service providers (ISPs) in the country.
Of the ISPs, 117 are of nationwide category, 73 of central zone category, 57 of zonal category, 175 of ‘A’ category, 29 of ‘B’ category and 48 of ‘C’ category.
As per the decision of the commission, initiatives will be taken soon to appoint audit firms to implement the decision, the BTRC official said.
The audits will cover financial and technical aspects that will let the telecom regulator to know whether the entities are following due procedures in operating their services, he said.
As there is revenue sharing factor for the entities, financial audit might bring out tax or revenue sharing issues as well, the BTRC official said.
The costs of audit will be provided from the BTRC’s own fund as it is done in the cases of Grameenphone and Robi Axiata audits.
The commission in October this year decided that it would audit mobile network operators at the end of every three years to avoid complexities of running audit for a long period of time at a time.
The decision was taken against the backdrop of a delay in completing the ongoing audits of two mobile phone operators — Grameenphone and Robi Axiata.
In October 2015 the telecom regulator appointed audit firm Toha Khan Zaman & Co for auditing GP.
The commission in March 2016 appointed Masih Muhith Haque & Co to conduct the information system audit of mobile phone company Robi Axiata.
Initially, the BTRC had given timeframes of 180 days to the auditors each to complete their audits, but the auditors got time extension for a number of times.
For the latest, the auditors have been asked to submit their reports by December 15 this year.
Meanwhile, the appointment of auditors for Banglalink and Airtel, which is already merged with Robi in November 2016, are underway.
State-owned mobile phone operator Teletalk and out-of-operation Citycell are yet to face any regulatory audit so far.
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