June 26, 2009

SingTel pulls back from bid to use Bangladesh bandwidth

Singapore-based telecom giant SingTel has pulled back from its bid to use 2.5Gb bandwidth from Bangladesh because of a lengthy procurement process, a persistent obstacle to lending excess bandwidth to international operators. The company sought 2.5Gb bandwidth from Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Limited (BSCCL) recently, but later declined to have it, as according to Public Procurement Regulation 2008, it needs 48 days to process an agreement regarding this, said a high official of BSCCL.

The official said: "Bangladesh could earn Tk 21crore a year, if it provided the bandwidth to SingTel." The country was linked with submarine cable in 2006 at a cost of $35.1 million. The SMW-4 cable has a capacity to handle 120Gb bandwidth, of which Bangladesh currently subscribes 24.12Gb. The country uses 23 percent of its capacity domestically.

After meeting the local demands, Bangladesh can let international companies use 8Gb. Telecom operators and IT firms are the major users of bandwidth. The last caretaker government formed the BSCCL to handle the country's lone undersea cable. But the company cannot work independently as it has no procurement policy as yet.

Officials said even after becoming a company, the BSCCL needs to comply with the government's procurement rules, which ultimately bar the company from lending bandwidth to lucrative international market. The BSCCL earns Tk 4 crore per month from the local telecom and IT operators.

Source: The Daily Star


Kashif said...

One thing I don't understand is that If we have the backbone in place, whats holding us back from overhauling our internet infrastructure? How come we only use 23 percent of our potential? These uneducated hoards in government don't know smack about IT and find chances everywhere they can to suck the country dry. And no one has the means to stand up to these corrupt 'saviours of the world'. Digital Bangladesh.. Wonder if they know what it even means....

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