23 Jul 2014
Three of Somalia’s largest telecoms operators have signed a cooperation agreement to pave the way for interconnection between their networks, local news source Dalsan Radio reports. In a press conference, Hormuud Telecom (HorTel), Somtel and Nationlink said they have agreed to form the Somali Telecommunication Company (STC) to facilitate the implementation of the cooperation deal, which will enable their mobile customers to communicate across the three networks. Somalia’s wireless market is currently unregulated, a situation which has enabled firms such as HorTel and Nationlink to freely install and operate their own networks as they choose, notes TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database. Before 1991 the country’s communications networks were under government control, but following the onset of the civil war, the entire telecoms infrastructure was all but destroyed. New networks have since sprung up, installed by a number of small local operators, offering mobile and fixed telephony services, but in the absence of a central regulatory authority, interconnectivity between networks is limited and companies must negotiate agreements amongst themselves.