Four companies apply for a mobile licence in Swaziland

1 Nov 2016

Lindiwe Malaza, acting CEO of the Swaziland Communications Commission (SCC), has revealed that a total of four companies – locally-owned Swazi Mobile and Data Net, and international telecoms providers Viettel Group and Orange-backed Mauritius Telecom – have submitted bids for an individual electronic communications network and services licence in the Kingdom of Swaziland, writes The Observer. The executive disclosed that the four applicants have submitted all the required documents by the deadline, adding that the licence award process will comprise three stages, namely: submission and pre-evaluation of bids, evaluation of applications and award of a technology-neutral concession.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, the sole mobile operator in the Kingdom is MTN Swaziland, which was granted an initial ten-year exclusivity period in July 1998. While the government planned to have a second operational cellco by the end of 2011, this time frame proved to be wide off the mark and it was February 2016 before an updated telecoms regulation – which was aiming to provide for the opening of the mobile sector to competition and ending MTN Swaziland’s monopoly in the market – was discussed in parliament.