KATHMANDU, March 31: A private sector telecommunication service provider, Ncell, which should supposedly come under the government’s ownership after 2029 as per the existing laws, will not come under the ownership of the government as manipulations are being made in the draft bill being introduced to bring amendment to the existing Telecommunication Act, 1997.
The move by the government to expedite the process of introducing new telecommunication laws with controversial provisions that seek to benefit cellphone giant Ncell has raised concerns. It appears that Ncell is trying to manipulate the existing law, and the government seems to be more than willing to help it do so.
The 25-year license period that Ncell obtained on September 1, 2004, is expiring in September 2029. As per the existing Telecommunication Act, 1997, after the expiry of the license period, Ncell will come under the ownership of Nepal government if it chooses not to limit its foreign ownership to less than 50 percent.