CITY OF CAPE TOWN WANTS PTN LICENCE UNDER SA'S NEW COMPETITION FRAMEWORK

Telecoms

The City of Cape Town has applied for a public telephone (PTN) licence that if awarded, will help it cut a large chunk from its annual R100 million telecommunications bill.

Nirvesh Sooful, City of Cape Town CIO, says the licence application was made to ICASA (the Independent Communications Authority of SA) about three months ago, before the August telecommunications liberalisation announcement made by communications minister Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri. He says no word has been heard from the regulator since.“Our aim is to increase our options when negotiating with telecommunications providers and not to provide telephone services to the consumer,” Sooful says.

He says the awarding of such a licence would put the municipality in a powerful bargaining position, but that it would probably not follow the example of Tshwane (Pretoria) of aiming to supply “consumer-type” telecommunications services.The City of Cape Town pays Telkom about R74 million a year to supply voice and telecommunications services and a further R16 million is paid to other providers such as the cellular network operators.

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