Digicel, Transact in breach of licences, says Telecoms Commission

21 May 2012

The Royal Gazette newspaper reports that the Telecoms Commission of Bermuda has advised government that it has found local operators Digicel and Transact to be ‘not in compliance’ with the terms of their licences. However, the minister of environment, planning and infrastructure strategy, Marc Bean, has told the commission that before a decision is taken on the case, he needs to be given more information on how it reached its findings. The paper claims to have a copy of the Telecoms Commission’s findings which follow a review launched in December last year into whether the international long-distance service (ILD) that Digicel and sister company Transact launched was in compliance with the terms and conditions of their respective licences. Commission chairman Ronald Simmons notes in the summation that, having considered the written and oral evidence, the committee considered this was not the case and that: ‘Specifically: No interconnection agreement between Digicel and Transact has been approved by the Commission as required. Therefore, no traffic can legally be shared between the two companies … Transact is accepting traffic from a Class B carrier, which is in contravention of Condition 3 of its licence … Digicel is required by its licence to pass its International Long Distance voice traffic directly to a Class A carrier … The evidence shows that Digicel is passing its International Long Distance voice traffic to a Class C Carrier, which is in contravention of Condition 4 of its licence. The Commission notes that historically Digicel has followed this condition, demonstrating that it was aware of the terms of its licence.’ For its part, Digicel is expected to challenge the decision through the courts.

Bermuda, Digicel Bermuda (incl. Bermuda Telephone Company), FKB Transact