Tuesday, 1 March 2011 7:39 AM

Bemobile Penalized

The Telecommunications Commission of the Solomon Islands (TCSI) has announced that Bemobile Solomon Islands Limited is in breach of its license.

The Telecommunications Commission says Bemobile has failed to provide telecommunications service to 75 per cent of the population by 1st February 2011 and has failed to rectify the situation by 14th February 2011 as required in its license.

Telecommunications Commissioner Nicholas Williams says Bemobile has failed to meet its obligations on a number of requirements since June last year.

This includes the launch of its service on 18th June 2010, coverage obligation of 50 per cent by 18th September 2010 and a required total of 75 per cent of the population by 30th November 2010.

Mr Williams says Bemobile has confirmed to TCSI that they have not been able to build any additional sites since December 2010.

"TCSI has found that Bemobile has failed to meet its third coverage threshold of 75 per cent of the population that commenced on February 1st 2011, as well as during the 14 day rectification period that was provided for under the license."

He says the National Statistics Office and TCSI have both examined claims of whether Bemobile might have reached 64 per cent coverage and have both agreed that the figure is not correct.

Mr. Williams says the Telecommunications Commission has moved to exercise the US$1 Million dollar fine in connection with Bemobile's failure to meet the third threshold.

It is understood that TCSI is defending a court challenge by Bemobile on the lawfulness of the coverage obligation and exercise of the fine.

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