ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has issued guidelines to establish cross border telecommunication links with neighbouring countries.

According to the document available on pta website, all Long Distance and International (LDI) licensees, Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd. (PTCL) and National Telecommunication Corporation (NTC) are allowed to establish cross border bilateral/transit communication links with neighboring countries of Pakistan via terrestrial fixed wireline/fixed wireless or satellite, under their respective licenses.

Every eligible licensee intending to establish cross border bilateral/transit communication links with neighboring countries of Pakistan via terrestrial fixed wireline/wireless or satellite would be required to get prior approval from the Authority.

Every application for cross border link shall include valid agreement/memorandum of understanding (MoU) with counterpart in other country, capacity and physical route of the link, type of traffic, expected volume of traffic, technical plan along with layouts, location of peering point and financial plan including expected revenue for the next 5 years.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication has constituted an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) that consist various members for evaluation to grant approval/NOC or denial of every application/request for establishing cross border bilateral/transit communication links with neighboring countries of Pakistan via terrestrial fixed wireline/fixed wireless or satellite.

The IMC is comprised of chairman, pta convener, a representative from Cabinet Division Secretary NTISB, a representative from Ministry of IT, a representative from Intelligence Bureau and a representative from ISI and a representative from Ministry of Interior.

On the receipt of approval/NOC from the IMC members, pta will initially grant Permit in Principle with certain conditions as required by IMC members.

Final/formal approval shall be granted by pta on many conditions which includes, obtaining satisfactory report from the concerned agencies regarding provision of national security, clearance report from Finance, Commercial Affairs, Licensing and Technical Services Divisions regarding clearance of all outstanding dues, satisfactory inspection report from Enforcement Division, pta regarding fulfillment of other conditions as contained in PiP and fulfillment of requirements of any new policy for the time being enforced.