More than twelve companies have responded to Sri Lanka’s Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC)’s offer of nationwide WiMAX operating licences in the 3.5GHz frequency band. The regulator will initially set the tariffs for any services launched, as part of a government initiative to provide internet connectivity to remote areas at very low costs. ‘The responses have been overwhelming and the intention of TRC is to have the major cities covered by WiMAX by December 2006,’ TRC Director General Kanchana Ratwatte said. So far, the watchdog has assigned test WiMAX frequencies to incumbent fixed line provider Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT), whose Chief Marketing Officer Kapila Chandrasena told reporters on Tuesday that the telco could deploy a island-wide WiMAX network within a year of gaining regulatory approval. SLT is initially aiming to roll out WiMAX in metropolitan areas including Colombo, Kandy and Galle.