The telecom regulator is set to publish the guidelines for fourth generation (4G) mobile telecommunications technology at the beginning of the new year of 2016.Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has finalised a shortlist of consultants for making a spectrum road map and is going to fix the prices to this effect.
The outgoing boss of BTRC Sunil Kanti Bose said, late last week they have completed composing the guidelines and the announcement for spectrum allocation will be made early next year. Sources at the BTRC said 4G Long-Term Evolution (4GLTE) will be initiated within a short time and will be done by December 2015. The country's mobile phone operators have been demanding formulation of a spectrum road map outlining bands for different technologies and services for the past few years.
The sources said the regulator has shortlisted five persons among the applicants of consultants taking experiences and qualifications into consideration. All the shortlisted individuals are foreigners with one being Bangladeshi-British. They will have to face interview and after that one of them will be finally chosen.
The interview has not taken place as yet. The new BTRC chairman will conduct the interview to select the new consultant, one source said.According to BTRC's latest rules, tenure of the consultant will be one year as said in the advertisement and the appointment will be on a part-time basis. The salary will be negotiable.The duties of the consultant will be to prepare the band release plan for the country and advise necessary actions in this connection. The consultant will also fix acquisition fees and yearly charges for 4G spectrum bands.
BTRC officials said, they were working on composing the guidelines for the use of 700MZ and 1,800MZ spectrums, irrespective of technology.This would help run 3G and 4G technologies with one spectrum, which will be cost-effective.The telecom regulator has accelerated the process of releasing 700MHz spectrum in the country to introduce the latest 4G mobile technology. As part of the initiative, the BTRC started recovering the unused or semi-used airwave frequency from the operators. The telecom regulator also decided to bring back spectrums from some land-phone operators for their alleged failure to utilise the valuable frequency.
The Spectrum Management Division was asked to prepare a complete proposal to cancel spectrum licence of some PSTN (public switched telephone network) operators in the country, an official said, BTRC also asked its Engineering and Operation Division to scrutinize the technical aspects of illegal call termination by the PSTN operators. Meanwhile, the regulatory body and the Post and Telecommunication Division have recently been locked in conflict on spectrum pricing issues.Telecom industry insiders said these types of conflict would be resolved through appointment of the spectrum consultant.