PTA-Warid row over 4G LTE

Updated Apr 29 2014


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LAHORE: While Warid Telecom is planning to launch 4G LTE (long-term evolution) to compete with the 3G/4G licence-holders, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority insists that the company under the law needs permission from the regulator for the introduction of new service.

Since Warid did not take part in the bidding for 3G and 4G spectra, PTA may turn down its request for permission to go for the launch of 4G (LTE) considering the interests of other cellular companies who bought the (3G/4G) licences for $1.12 billion.

“The existing licence of Warid is technology neutral but it does not mean that it is service neutral. All newly-launched services require PTA’s consent. For this, Warid will have to send in a proper request.

The PTA will look into such a request based on the licence conditions (assuring proper coverage, quality of service, enhanced monitoring requirements and commencement permissions), and in the best interest of the cellular industry, especially the winners of the 3G/4G spectrum auction,” a PTA official responded through email to a Dawn’s query.

A Warid official told Dawn that the company, according to its licence requirement, would notify to the PTA about the launch of 4G LTE since it (Warid) had enough spectrum available with it for the new technology.

“The cellular company’s licence is not “service neutral” and it will have to seek approval for new services,” PTA told Dawn on Monday.