Parliament wades into NCA, telcos dispute

13 Jan 2015

Ghana’s Parliamentary Select Committee on Communication has reportedly requested that the National Communication Authority (NCA) re-engage in talks with operators on the award of an Interconnect Clearing House (ICH) licence, after several meetings between the operators and the regulator on the proposal have ended inconclusively, Ghana Web reports. According to NCA, the current peer-2-peer interconnect system ‘is complex to manage, expensive to implement by new entrants, and prone to link-failure as it has caused major network outages over the last years’. The regulator pointed out that an ICH, set to be established in May 2015, would have a positive effect on wholesale interconnection rates, as it will mitigate the rising trends affecting wholesale interconnection tariffs. However, operators are opposing the award of an ICH concession, which will be granted by 7 February 2015 for a term of ten years subject to renewal, describing it as an ‘imposition and interference in their operations’. Conrad Nyur, director of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs division at Wireless Application Services Providers Association of Ghana (WASPAG), disclosed that the potential establishment of an ICH will increase the cost of doing business for value added service (VAS) providers.

Ghana, National Communications Authority (NCA)