While Myanmar’s two international telecom companies have yet to receive their operating licences from the government, experts say the real — and possibly crippling — challenges as they move into the virgin market of 60 million consumers will be site acquisition and navigating state regulations.
On Oct 4, the draft Telecommunications Bill was sent back to parliament’s lower house. Until it is revised and signed by President Thein Sein, Norway’s Telenor and Qatar’s Ooredoo cannot receive licences to operate. However, this has done little to hold back their aggressive plans to begin network rollouts.
“We all know what’s going to be in the law anyway,” Edwin Vanderbruggen, a partner at the Yangon office of VDB Loi told Asia Focus. “The discussion is on two or three conflicts, not the other 97% [of the law]. I don’t think any of these points are alarming for the operators.”
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