ISLAMABAD ( GUEST WRITER )
Telecommunication industry in going through tough patch as PTA for un-known reasons is only interested to facilitate Cellular Operators. Rest of the industry and the challenges they are facing is simply being ignored. PTA doors are open for representatives of mobile companies whereas others are facing great difficulty even in getting hold of authority officials.
Telecom experts are of the view that sector regulator thinking and planning is revolving around Mobile companies and their strategies. This has being observed during April 2014 3G/4G spectrum auction when the entire process was executed as per the script provided by these influential mobile operators. Cellular Operators was successfully able to pursue Chairman PTA to lobby the split of one 10 MHz spectrum into two 5 MHz spectrum in order to end the auction competition pressure. Chairman PTA being known as the expert of the field was then able to push agenda on these mobile operators and convince Ministry of Information Technology and 3G/4G Auction Supervisory Committee for split of spectrum which eventually resulted into end of competition among mobile operators for award of 3G/4G license.
If we recall, sensing the situation, Reuters published a detail report predicting the possible level of proceeds from 3G/4G auction two weeks before the auction date. When the report was published, PTA was very disturbed and Chairman PTA publicly announced that authority has decided to take legal action against foreign news agency Reuters for trying to “sabotage” the much-awaited auction of next-generation spectrum licenses however, as usual, nothing happen in this regards and time has proven that Chairman PTA announcement was just another eye wash for the public and we all know that people of Pakistan has very short lived memory.
Time and again PTA has given impression to the other stake holders of industry that future of Telecom industry is linked with future of Cellular operators. This thinking has already cost the country millions of dollars loss in 3G/4G auction and now practically the entire authority is operating as hostage at the hands of mobile operators and other licensees are suffering and paying the cost of this regulatory dilemma. This approach at PTA needed to end quickly otherwise we may end up in a situation where the loss is irreparable.
Editorial note. This is Rashid Shah point of view if anyone have difference view can share with us we will publish in same manner.