THE Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that the newly licensed Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) have to roll out service within a year of completing negotiations with the mobile network operators (MNOs) in the country.
NCC, which said it has licensed 26 operators to carry out MVNO operations in Nigeria, noted that more companies would still be licensed in the country.
MVNO is a telecommunications product and service operator that rides on the infrastructure capacity of a fully licensed mobile telecommunication service provider or MNOs.
The MVNOs will be providing the same services as MTN, Globacom, Airtel, and 9mobile, albeit on the same infrastructure built by the MNOs. The entrance of the MNVO is expected to provide competitive offerings in the telecoms market and lower the costs of calls and data for subscribers.
Speaking at a meeting in Lagos, Wednesday, the Head, Pre-Licensing, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Usman Mamman, said: “The MVNOs are expected to conclude negotiations with the mobile network operators (MNOs) and put up service within one year of getting licensed.”
Mamman assured of immense support for the MVNOs, stressing that they are expected to help the country bridge the access gaps, which has dropped to 97 from 114.
The Commission had created different categories of licences under the MVNO framework, which range from tier 1 to tier 5, the 25 companies so far licensed are in categories 2 to 5, while no company has acquired a tier 1 licence, which is the lowest.
NCC database showed that seven companies were licensed in the tier 2 category and these include: Routelink Integrated Systems Ltd, Hazon Technologies Limited, Asel Telecom Nigeria Limited, Briclinks Africa Plc, Pisi Mobile Services Limited, Univasa Nigeria Limited and Imose Technologies Limited.
Companies licensed in the tier three category are also seven in number and they include: Amics Technologies Limited, Zegtel Limited, Telewyz Limited, Siu Telecommunications Network, Abrindex Nigeria Limited, Metropolitan Consortium Nigeria Limited and IPNX Nigeria Limited.
Those licensed as tier four operators include Imbil Telecoms Solutions Nig. Ltd, Environmental Expressions Limited and DMK Telecommunication Nigeria Ltd.
In the tier five category, eight companies were licensed. These include Systegra Technologies Limited; Choffan Communications Limited, Mab Consultant and Associates Ltd, H & Y Business Global Limited, Taima Technologies Ltd, Global Communication Extension Services Ltd, USKS Ventures International Ltd and Paribas Communication Limited.
MEANWHILE, following the issuance of 3.5GHz spectrum licences for the deployment of Fifth Generation (5G) networks in Nigeria, marked by ultra-high speed Internet, low latency and high capacity, and the subsequent commercial launch by two of the three licence holders, 5G subscriptions have grown to over 60,000 in many cities in at least 12 states of the Federation.
The 5G licensing, which fetched the Federal Government some $820 million, NCC assured of its
commitment to always give concrete expression to the Federal Government Executive Order 001 focused on Ease of Doing Business and other digital economy-oriented policies, by embarking on various regulatory initiatives that support a friendly investment climate for investors in Nigeria and enhance value for money for telecom consumers.