Somalia sets 31 August deadline for operators to register, or close down

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Telecoms companies in Somalia have until the end of the month to apply for licences to operate, or they will have to cease.

The National Communications Authority (NCA) of Somalia has issued a warning that they will have to conform with the country’s unified licensing framework which complies with national communication law.

The law covers operators of communications infrastructure, plus application and service providers, including mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), internet service providers, suppliers of terminal equipment, providers of satellite services and registrars for Somalia’s .so domain, said the NCA, based in Mogadishu (pictured).

nwsinsideAccording to the NCA, applications for national communications infrastructure providers carry an initial fee of US$5,000. Licensees then need to pay an initial operating fee of $275,000 and an annual fee of $50,000.

In order to qualify, organisations should be registered in Somalia and have a fully registered office and permanent premises in Somalia. They also need to “provide details of shareholders and directors” and “provide evidence of tax compliance”, said the regulator.

The government said that it started to move to the new law in 2017 after lacking a legal framework since 1991. The NCA stepped up awareness operations in July 2020 but has now warned that the deadline is close.

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