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NICTA cautioned on licenses

STATE entity PNG DataCo Ltd has urged National Information and Communications Technology Authority (NICTA) to grant licenses to investors based on the government’s continued reforms and policies.
DataCo was established to operate and maintain the National Transmission Network (NTN), and would supply NTN bandwidth to network license holders such as Digicel, Telikom PNG, Bmobile and internet service providers on a wholesale basis.
In a submission for amendments to the NICTA Act 2009, DataCo cautioned the authority to be mindful of the government’s continued reforms particularly in state-owned entities and agencies.
According to DataCo, any decision by NICTA in granting licences under section 132 ought to be made in light of those government policies.
“Such policies may include giving exclusivity rights to the State to provide wholesale facilities and services such as international communication cable links and landing of submarine cable facilities in PNG, particularly in the design, construction and operation of international communication cables links, where these facilities are not easily feasibly substituted or duplicated,” the company said in a statement yesterday.
“While the state may have exclusivity in designing, constructing and operating the international communication cable links, access to these facilities (once operational) would be regulated under the wholesale regime of the Act which is beneficial to both the state and the information and communication technology (ICT) sector.
“Moreover, the state’s investment in providing international communication cable links and landing facilities in PNG would be protected whilst at the same time, the Act’s objectives of efficiency and competition in the provision of interconnection and wholesale services will be achieved especially in a small ICT market such as PNG.”
DataCo said that allowing the state to have exclusivity in provision of international communication links and landing facilities would ensure Government’s interests in addressing and arresting Cybercrime, Cyber Security and even Censorship Control is given prominence.
It added that these concerns were matters of national interest and national security and could be best achieved with single points of monitoring, filtering or control through state having exclusivity to these international links.
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