Telecom industry is considered a significant sector in Pakistan but mobile operators are facing problems and are becoming concerned due to the license renewal policy.
Telecom operators revealed that they are obliged to pay the renewal fees in US dollars which is restraining their cash flows.
The reason why mobile operators want to pay the renewal fees is the continuous devaluation of Pakistani currency against dollars. Their revenue is in Pakistani Rupees and they have to pay renewal fees in US dollars.
Telecom Operators believe that the renewal fees of license should be in local currency. The government was expected to renew the license fee policy a year ago but still the matter is not resolved.
The licenses for two telecom operators are expiring in May 2019 which is making the sector to become concerned.
They believe that a new policy should be initiated as soon as possible which should be fair & transparent promoting confidence of investors.
In the past few years telecom industry has been the backbone for attracting foreign investment and creating jobs. Now at a time when government launched its objective of ‘Digital Pakistan’ it is every important to resolve the issues of telecom sector to attain the maximum growth.
Now the teledensity is 84% with stagnation while the data is growing due to 3G and 4G. But so far only only 30% of population is benefitting from this which means there is huge potential in the sector.
To increase the coverage the mobile operators need new spectrums which also help to boost ecommerce, e-business and digitalization.
Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and government should reveal a new license renewal policy after consideration of all stake holders to achieve its objectives of ‘Digital Pakistan’.