Gov’t to introduce quality of service standards

GOVERNMENT has said it is not happy with the quality of service in the local mobile phone market. To this end, several changes will be made to this country’s Telecommunications Act, so as to make the sector more robust and among other things to prevent mergers/acquisitions in the sector.

This has been stated by Senator Darcy Boyce, Minister with responsibility for Telecommunications, during the recent official launch of Ozone Wireless at Manor Lodge, Green Hill, St. Michael.

“First of all, we will very shortly be introducing quality of service standards for the local Mobile market,” Senator Boyce said.

“We are not happy that the quality of service is not as good as it ought to be in a country like Barbados, so we are going to do something about that with the Telecommunications Act,” the Minister declared.

In addition, work is to start shortly on the local number portability project where two of the large companies here in Barbados having agreed to fund that project, Boyce revealed. He is hoping that Ozone Wireless can join in that project, which is to be done in stages.

The Minister promised as well that Government intends on starting to redefine what the universal service package is. According to him, “No longer can we continue with the package, which is essentially a landline or equivalent.”

He made it clear that the universal service package must contain a minimum amount of data, so that persons at all levels are able to access Internet and to use the telecommunications technology in a way so as to live a better life and do business better.

Furthermore, through the Act, Government will make sure that it is no longer easy for companies in the sector to change ownership. Senator Boyce said it is necessary for the competition to continue and for companies to keep their licences.

The Minister expects that a more competitive telecommunications landscape will be reflected in better prices for consumers. “It will enable all of us to avoid roaming charges as consumers go around the region,” he said.

The Minister wished Ozone Wireless well and that he expects it to become successful in the local market.

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