Somalia seeks to regulate the ICT sector

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MOGADISHU–Somalia’s telecommunication industry regulator on Saturday kicked off consultation process aimed at regulating the information and communications technology (ICT) sector.

Abdi Sheikh Ahmed, general manager of the National Communications Authority (NCA), said the industry regulator will formally go through consultation process every time it wants to introduce regulations and seek public comment before they are adopted.

“We understand regulator is a new concept in Somalia, so does introducing regulations developed by a regulator. Therefore we are not only inviting comments from operators, but also want the general public to actively participate in our consultation process,” Ahmed said in a statement issued during the launch of the consultation process in Mogadishu.

Ahmed said NCA will give priority to rules of procedures to interact with NCA, numbering regulation, interconnection regulation and public notice, spectrum and service provider, Somalia frequency allocation table, and type approval guidelines.

The government in February established the country’s first-ever ICT body NCA to help regulate the country’s telecommunication sector.

NCA later in March took control of the domain from the Somali National Information Center (SONIC) and Cloudy Registry, who ran the operations and the management of the domain Registry.

Abdi Ashur Hassan, minister for Post, Telecom and Technology, lauded the ICT stakeholders for successfully establishing NCA that is now ready to take its due role in regulating the sector.

Hassan said the ICT sector is of utmost importance for the government because of its potential multiplier effect on all sectors of the economy.

The minister said once the ICT sector is regulated it will be a win-win situation for all because investors will have assurances for their investment instead of the current chaos in the market.

“Consumers will have better services such as interconnected mobile networks instead of carrying several mobile phones, and finally government revenue from the sector will increase through taxation and other charges, which will also help us in reinvesting through infrastructure and universal access fund,” Hassan said.

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