Nigerian regulator green-lights operator network sharing

Nigerian regulator green-lights network sharing

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) revealed it approved MTN Nigeria and Emerging Markets Telecommunication Service (EMTS) to carry out a network sharing trial, a move to spur resource sharing among operators to improve connectivity services.

In a statement, the regulator detailed the ‘national roaming service’ trial began on August 1 and will end October 31.

EMTS, which trades as 9Mobile, and MTN Nigeria will configure their networks to test and simulate customer experience, explained the NCC. The trial covers a few local governments in the Ondo State, which is designated as the National Roaming Geographic area.

The NCC also detailed through a national roaming agreement mobile subscribers should be able to access services such as calls, text and data fluidly when travelling outside of their usual network area.

NCC executive vice-chairman Umar Garba Danbatta said the primary objective of the National Roaming Service trial is to encourage network resource sharing among operators.

He noted the sharing of resources will lead to OPEX optimisation and CAPEX efficiency, and free up resources for operators to expand networks and connect remote parts of Nigeria.

“The successful implementation of the trial will enable EMTS subscribers to access MTN network service within the National Roaming trial geographical area without the need for an MTN Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card,” Danbatta said.

In September, Danbatta said the regulator will set initiatives to boost the Nigerian telecoms industry over the next five years, pledging a boost to 4G availability and implementation of a digital economy.

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