23 Oct 2013
The United Arab Emirates’ Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has announced that the country’s two wireless operators, Etisalat and Du, no longer require regulatory approval before introducing pre-paid packages in the mobile market. The watchdog said that this move ‘will expedite the process of new products entering the UAE ICT market and also improve the quality of services provided by Etisalat and Du to consumers.’ It did stress, however, that all products entering the market must comply with the competition framework currently in place, and it will continue to monitor all products and packages after being released in order to protect the interests of UAE consumers. ‘Affording licensees the ability to go straight to market with their products is a positive step forward that will encourage Etisalat and Du to create more attractive mobile packages for UAE consumers,’ commented the TRA’s director general Mohamed Nasser Al Ghanim. The regulator’s latest statistics show that pre-paid customers made up the vast majority (87.0%) of the nation’s 14.93 million total active mobile subscribers at the end of July 2013.