Will unified licensing bring down data costs in Ghana?

Will unified licensing bring down data costs in Ghana?

According to local press reports, Ghana’s government is considering establishing a unified licensing regime for operators.

The aim of rolling out the unified license regime, a system already in place in a number of countries, will be to bring down the cost of internet provision for operators – and consequently consumers.

The problem, it seems, has been that more and more Ghanaians are using data and that the current licensing regime is not flexible enough to respond. In fact communications minister designate Ursula Owusu Ekuful has been quoted as saying that the current license regime does not have the technology to grant a single license for a spectrum operation.

This means that operators acquire a separate license for each spectrum award that is either 2G, 3G or 4G. Not surprisingly, this is proving costly for operators.

The idea of the unified licensing regime is that competing telecommunications operators and service providers can offer a variety of telecommunications services without having to apply for separate licenses. For example, operators will be able to acquire one set of licenses for both voice and data operations.

This apparently fits a government drive to make data accessible to consumers at a cheaper rate which, according to the minister designate, has become critical due to the increasing usage of data in the country.

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