The Bangladesh Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (BTRC) yesterday issued six licences for the deployment of international terrestrial cables (ITC), aiming to improve the country’s international connectivity. The six new licensees – Novocom Limited, Asis-AHL JV, BD Link Communication Ltd, Mango Teleservices Ltd, Summit Communications Ltd and Fibre@Home Limited – each paid BDT20 million (USD244,000) in licence fees and must begin cable laying by July this year, Telecomasia reports. Bangladesh is currently served by a single submarine cable, SEA-ME-WE-4, whilst TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that only one International Internet Gateway (IIG) licence has been issued in the private sector, which was won in February 2008 by Mango Teleservices (in an auction excluding foreign companies and existing domestic telecoms licensees); Mango operates IIG services alongside state-owned Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Ltd (BTCL). Of the other new ITC cable licensees, GlobalComms says that both Fiber@Home and Summit Communications hold Nationwide Telecommunication Transmission Network (NTTN) licences covering domestic long-distance and local access voice and data services, issued in 2009.
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