Debate continues over supervisory body plan; WiMAX to Chiloé

29 May 2007

Chilean consumer rights group Conadecus has revealed via a statement on its web site, cited by BNamericas, that telecom watchdog Subtel’s plan to create an independent supervisory body is ill-advised as it could create more regulatory obstacles and distract the regulator from more pressing issues. The group claims that Subtel already has the necessary legal powers to provide adequate regulation, saying that the new panel would be a drain on ‘financial resources, delay decisions and probably increase regulations’ and that it should instead focus on number portability, unbundling cable networks and deciding whether to allow mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) to enter the market. Subtel’s head Pablo Bello revealed that he sees the creation of a supervisory body as necessary because it would be ‘healthier to separate law making from supervision or administration, so those tasks are not conditioned by other government interests.’

In separate but related news, Subtel has said in a statement that it is to launch a rural WiMAX project in the southern island of Chiloé using equipment installed by Entel. The network will connect some 6,000 homes, 215 businesses, 230 rural school and 70 health centres and will cost CLP400,000 (USD765,000).

Chile, Entel Chile