We are ready to test 5G but government does not allow it: Ncell CIO

The reason behind the decision of Axiata Group, the parent company of Ncell, to exit Nepal.

KATHMANDU: Ncell has stated that it will begin 5G testing immediately if the government grants permission to conduct the latest telecommunication technology in Nepal.

Speaking at the interaction programme titled ‘5G in Nepal, Challenge and way forward’ organized by Tech Journos Forum, in Kathmandu, Ncell’s Chief Information Officer, Vishal Upadhyay, said that Ncell has long been dissatisfied with the government’s decision to allow only Nepal Telecom, which it owns, to test 5G and unable to test since long.

He said that that delay in the testing of 5G and no priority to Ncell raised the question of if we are going back to the early 2000 era in terms of telecommunication development. “The government should look into our request for 5G seriously and if given the opportunity, we will be able to bring 5G within a certain time, as we (Axiata) have experience of work in five other markets.”

Similarly, taking about the affordability and the government’s policy that intends to reduce the tariff in line with the income of Nepali consumers, he said that the government should also consider fixing service on the basis of the spectrum fee that the government charges. Telecommunication is known as one of the heavily taxed sectors in Nepal. Upadhyay said that in the case of Nepal, 5G can be used in mobile broadband service expansion, education, and the entertainment sector to start.

Ncell has already requested the government to allow 5G testing through the Nepal Telecommunication Authority. But the government has not heard Ncell’s request even after a long period of time.

Speaking at the event, Sunil Jakibanja, an independent telecommunications expert, said that longer the Nepali government delays the 5G test, Nepal’s technology sector will suffer.

Jakibanja stated that when it comes to introducing new technology, there should be no discrimination between government and private companies, and that the government’s attitude will push the country’s entire technology sector backward.

On the other hand, Nepal Telecom, a government owned company, which has received permission for 5G testing, has stated that it has only begun technical testing and does not know when the 5G test will take place in Nepal.

Purushotam Khanal, Chairman of Nepal Telecommunication Authority, stated that the 5G testing done by Nepal Telecom is not performing as expected.

“We have given permission to Nepal Telecom for 5G testing long before but they should know why they could not test it,” Khanal said. He stated that the authority is researching the advantages of bringing 5G to Nepal.

Fiscal Nepal |
Thursday February 23, 2023, 05:56:41 PM |

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