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Management Discussion and Analysis

Regulatory Capital

The telecommunication industry in Sri Lanka is governed through various regulations and policies by the authorities in key aspects including but not limited to the Telecommunication system license regime, Service Provider license regime, spectrum license regime, media and broadcasting license regime, Interconnection regime, International telecommunications regulatory regime, Tariff and Economic regulations, equipment importations, consumer rights, copyright, data protection, cyber security, the wholesale connectivity service provisioning to service providers, competition & compliances, quality of services, specific taxes and levies enacted by various Acts and regulations. The respective authorities set directives from time to time to protect consumers and the industry, retain healthy industry competition, servicing unserved and underserved communities and maintain technical standards to ensure compatibility between different operators and devices and also aligning and abiding with the global standards declared by International Regulatory authorities.

Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRCSL) is vested with telecommunication regulatory powers by Sri Lanka Telecommunications Act No. 25 of 1991 as amended by the Act No. 27 of 1996. There are a few other government institutions which construe direct influential regulatory authorisation in the Telecommunication industry namely the Board of Investments, Ministry of Digital Infrastructure and Information Technology, Ministry of Mass Media, Ministry of Finance, Right to Information Commission, Consumer Affairs Authority, Central Environmental Authority, Department of Public Enterprises, Customs of Sri Lanka and the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.

The telecommunication industry is heavily dependent on major investment deployments in Sri Lanka in providing affordable and quality access to broadband services to all citizens and promoting country’s digitalisation plans in line with sustainability goals of the country.

Regulatory licensing

TRCSL has granted the required telecommunication license to SLT Group where Mobitel is the mobile arm of the group to provide services island wide which comprise system licenses to operate mobile, fixed wired, fixed wireless, international, satellite, internet services, data services, Carrier Grade WiFi including spectrum to operate 2G, 3G, 4G LTE networks, point to point, microwave and other radio networks. More importantly, SLT has been granted National Backbone Network (NBN) license as per the Cabinet Approved Policy for the NBN, an island-wide fibre backbone network infrastructure in Sri Lanka to cater national requirement of the country including international capacities and fibre access networks. TRCSL grants the license for a period of 10 years and license renewal process at the end of its validity. License amendments and modification process is also available. SLT is the pioneer IPTV license holder in Sri Lanka, Licensed by Ministry of Mass media for establishing the IPTV operation. Further SLT has been granted Direct To Home satellite license for PayTv operations island-wide using Satellite technology. Vendor license is also issued to SLT for telecommunication related equipment dealings.

Mobitel (Pvt) Ltd. is the fully owned subsidiary of SLT that operates licenses issued for Mobile operations island-wide which includes an authorisation to provide indoor WiFi, a Fixed Services license to provide outdoor WiFi, and several licenses related to spectrum for 3G and 4G technologies. Mobitel also holds an External Gateway Operator license and a Vendor license. Apart from several of these licenses, Mobitel carries a license from the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for mobile money operations.

Key roles in Regulatory Affairs arm aimed to ensure

  • Necessary license instruments for business operations from the regulatory authorities as enacted by law to continue its Business Operations with growth momentum.
  • Necessary spectrum allocations for the deployment of mobile and wireless technologies including 4G operation, 4.5G and 5G operations.
  • Active presence in processes where revisiting, making and amending policies, directives, regulations and Acts related to the telecommunication industry rights of organisation against anti-competitive practices or unlawful activities in industry by making regulatory and judiciary complaints of such unlawful acts.
  • Necessary approvals for business operations and investment protections
  • Regulatory and legal compliances including but not limited to consumer rights, data protections, intellectual rights, Quality of services, National security obligations

Regulatory assets of SLT

In lieu with regulatory permissions, SLT group has built extensive networks rightfully up to the premises of its customers which are subjected to operate and safeguard with no disturbances and interruptions

  • Island-wide fibre optic high speed backbone network with more than 50,000 km in cable lengths
  • Island-wide copper and FTTX access network with high speed access network capability
  • Island-wide 2G, 3G, 4G LTE, WiFi networks in both fixed wireless and mobile space with radio spectrum for frequencies.
  • Five International submarine Cable systems connecting with state of the art technologies and lowest latencies with many parts of the world
  • IPTV content broadcasting/multicasting/unicasting infrastructure and content rights and library
  • Modern Technologies and platforms of IP and digital capabilities with enhanced security firewalls including but not limited to data centres, multi cloud platforms and monitoring and operating centres
  • Extensive island wide Passive Telecommunications infrastructure including but not limited to telecommunications towers, poles, and ducts of both Fixed and Mobile Operations.
  • Brand names and goodwill as a public enterprise in Sri Lanka by owning majority government shares.