The government has cancelled the licence of country’s first mobile phone operator Citycell.
State Minister for Post and Telecommunications Tarana Halim disclosed the government’s decision at a press briefing at the Secretariat on Tuesday.
The government has took the decision to shut the country`s oldest mobile phone operator Citycell as it has failed to pay dues around Tk 477.51 crore, she said.
The Citycell subscribers will get seven days from tomorrow and after that time it will be shut, she said.
On July 31, in a surprising move, the regulator had served a notice to Citycell to pay all its dues, including regulatory fees and fines, worth Tk 477 crore by August 16.
The regulator ordered the operator to create an option for their subscribers to provide service through an alternative way, said the notice.
The total number of Citycell subscribers is approximately 1,50,000 after the biometric RIM registration.
According to the BTRC, the Citycell has not paid the second and third installments of the renewal fees of Tk 229 crore for 8.82 megahertz spectrum since spectrum renewal in 2012, which has breached the licencing terms.
The other dues include Tk 10 crore annual licence fees, Tk27.14 crore for annual spectrum fees from 2013 to 2016, Tk 27.84 crore revenue sharing from 2014 to 2016, Tk 8.92 crore corporate social responsibility fund from 2011 to 2016 while Tk39.92 crore VAT and Tk13.5 crore late fees.
Its parent company Pacific Bangladesh Telecom Limited got licence for telecom services in 1989.
Citycellis the only CDMA network operator in the country. It is currently owned by Singtel with 45% stake and the remaining 55% is owned by the Pacific Group and Far East Telecom.