We Will Not Force Telecoms To Share Infrastructure, says Minister

The ministry of ICT Postal and Courier Services vowed not to force telecoms companies share their infrastructure but promised to give them the chance to negotiate the best way to introduce the aspect.

According to Postal and Telecommunication Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ), infrastructure sharing seems to have met stiff resistance from certain giants in the telecommunications sector.

By Gift Chirauro

Speaking at the ICT Suppliers Association’s Annual General Meeting, Hon Minister of ICT Postal and Courier Services Cde Supa Mandiwanzira mentioned that the ministry will, together with POTRAZ, persuade the telecoms industry to start sharing their infrastructure.

As the Ministry, we are not going to force these companies into sharing their infrastructure as this is of their benefit, therefore they are supposed to realise the advantages they are to enjoy if they do so” said Hon Mandiwanzira.

He added that, infrastructure will have the citizens or the consumers enjoy better services at affordable prices. This will also make the industry get leverage on the power of collaboration so that broadband and other services are extended to the remote areas of the country.

We are not going for mandatory infrastructure sharing but we are urging service providers to collaborate under the guidance of POTRAZ and come up with a design that will offer solution or processes that suits the Zimbabwean context,” added Mandiwanzira.

 Recently the Postal and Telecommunication Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) have been advocating for a feasible framework of ideas on how best the telecommunication industry can come together and start using resources together.

Probably this was so because of duplication and at some point trebling of telecoms infrastructure, POTRAZ saw it necessary for the players to share.

However, some major telecoms companies has of late disagreed with the sharing aspect as they argued that service-based competition does not increase coverage or promote innovation. They also added that, it is uncertain that the pace of network roll-out could be accelerated with infrastructure sharing.

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