Take phone, Internet to remaining 15 rural municipalities: Panel

Published On: July 22, 2017 08:40 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, July 21: A parliamentary panel has directed the government authorities concerned to make telephone and Internet services accessible in 15 rural municipalities in the country that are yet to be connected with telecom services.

A meting of the Finance Committee of parliament held at Singh Durbar on Friday also directed the Ministry of Information and Communication (MoIC) to take appropriate policy measures to improve the quality of telephone and Internet services  and make these services easily accessible to people across the country. 

The meeting after deliberations by parliamentarians on the state of the country’s telecommunication services directed the state-owned Nepal Telecom to expand ADSL Internet service to all parts of the country. The meeting asked Nepal Telecom to make necessary arrangements to initiate free-of-cost Internet service in all government schools across the country after seeking necessary budget from the government. 

The meeting directed the MoIC to immediately make amendments to the Telecommunication Act and regulations as per the country’s telecommunication policy in order to ensure proper management of telecom service providers and improve service quality of telecom services in the country. 

The parliamentary panel has directed the government bodies concerned to recover both tax revenue and non tax revenue amount due till fiscal year 2016/17 from various telecom service provides including Ncell Private Limited, United Telecom Limited, CG Communications Private Limited, Nepal Satellite Telecom Private Limited and Smart Telecom Private Limited. The meeting asked the government to furnish details of the tax paid by the telecom service providers so far to the panel.

The royalty amount being provided by the telecom service provides is currently deposited in the fund of Nepal Telecommunication Authority. The parliamentary panel directed the finance ministry and MoIC to make necessary arrangements to deposit such amount in the Federal Reserve Fund as per the new constitution. 

The meeting also directed the authorities concerned to recover inter-connectivity amount to be paid by various telecom service providers to Nepal Telecom. Among other things, it asked Nepal Telecom to expand the 4G service which has already been started in a few major cities to other parts of the country. 

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