The government of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) has approved a new telecoms policy which will restrict the market to the three existing operators for three years. Minister for Communications and Works Elmore Stoutt said that the overall objective of the liberalisation policy is to create the conditions for a fully effective and successful telecommunications sector in the BVI, delivering excellent value for money to users and maximising the contribution of the sector to the economy. The Minister added that the island’s Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) is now inviting applications for a ‘Licence for the Operation of Telecommunications Network Providing Telecommunications Services in the British Virgin Islands’ from each of the three local telcos: BVI Cable TV, Cable & Wireless and CCT Global Communications. Applications are due by 4 May 2007. The TRC added that although the market is only open to the three existing operators, successful applicants will be permitted to compete in all areas of telecoms including fixed, mobile and international services, as well as internet and the distribution of cable television services.
At the end of the three year period, the Minister for Communications and Works will conduct a review to determine if the market can accommodate additional operators.