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Botswana scouts for new mobile wireless services provider

The Botswana Communications Regulatory Authority (BOCRA) has floated a tender for an international mobile telecommunications spectrum (IMT) licence for the provision of mobile broadband wireless access services.

According to BOCRA the call is for the provision of mobile broadband wireless access services in the spectrum bands 450 – 470 MHz, 790 - 862 MHz, 2110-2200 MHz, 3400 – 3600 MHz and 2500-2690 for broadband wireless access.

BOCRA spokesperson Aaron Nyelesi said the demand for broadband connectivity has increased as people embrace online services to do their business.

“The current networks, particularly mobile, continue to experience congestion as demand increases and BOCRA desires to license additional IMT and Fixed Service spectrum to alleviate this congestion and increase good customer service and experience,” said Nyelesi.

He said the release of the spectrum also supports BOCRA’s desires to create an environment that is conducive to the roll out of intelligent or smart technologies such as IOT, smart cities, connected utilities with a view to move Botswana to a fully digital economy.

BOCRA will issue a non-tradable spectrum licences for a period of 15 years to the successful applicants, citing that the Authority will require the applicants to demonstrate that they have the financial capacity to implement the project, including the required technical capability.

Nyelesi added that at the end of each year following the issuance of the licence, BOCRA will assess the compliance to roll out obligations.

“Where there is no justification for delay in fulfillment of roll out obligations, BOCRA will deduct, as a penalty, an amount equivalent to 1% of the performance bond for existing operators and 5% for new operators.”

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