The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has formed a 15-member committee to scrutinise and evaluate the applications submitted to the regulator by four entities for tower sharing licences.
Tower companies will be eligible for own, build and maintain all the telecom towers in the country and operators including all mobile and other telecom service providers will take services from them.
The committee, formed on June 25, was asked to submit its report to the commission within 15 days, a BTRC official told New Age last week.
BTRC commissioner Md Rezaul Quader has been made the convener of the committee that also includes, among others, legal and licensing department director general AKM Shahiduzzaman.
The committee would evaluate whether or not the companies followed due procedure stated in the licensing guidelines in submitting their applications for the licences.
The committee would evaluate the eligibility of the companies based on a ‘beauty contest method’.
The BTRC, based on the findings of the committee, would take its decision on awarding the licences.
Licences would be given by the commission upon getting approval from the posts and telecommunications ministry and payment of fees and charges by the applicants.
Eight companies have applied to the telecom regulator for four licences within the deadline for the application submission for licences that ended on 12:00pm on June 11.
edotco Bangladesh Company Limited, an associate company of Axiata Group’s edotco Group, is the lone entity out of the eight applicants that is already in operation in the tower sharing business in Bangladesh.
To fulfil the tower sharing licensing conditions, the country’s second largest mobile phone operator Robi has already withdrawn its ownership from edotco as shareholding in any tower company by a mobile phone company would make the proposed tower company ineligible to get licence.
iSON ECT Tower, an as sociate company of Africa-based iSON Group’s subsidiary iSON Tower, also applied for the licence.
iSON Tower is in operation in 40 countries across the globe where it provides tower sharing services to 10 global mobile companies.
AB High Tech Consortium, an associate entity of Swedish High Tech AB, state-owned Bangladesh Telecommunication Company Limited, BD Tower Business Company Consortium, FTA Bangladesh Limited, Jamuna Tower and TASD Summit Towers Limited are the rest six companies seeking the licences.