The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) welcomed the news that LEOsat operator Starlink has acquired licences to operate in Fiji, saying it will boost competition and make the digital economy more inclusive.
According to Island News, Starlink (Fiji) Pte Limited has been awarded a telecommunications licence from the Telecommunications Authority of Fiji and a spectrum licence from the Ministry of Trade, Co-operatives, SMEs and Communications.
In a statement issued on Sunday, the FCCC said Starlink’s entry into the market would significantly bridge Fiji’s digital divide and foster economic growth, particularly in the archipelago's most remote regions.
“What makes this expanded connectivity particularly significant is that it will allow residents in rural and maritime regions to more actively participate in the increasingly important digital economy, as well as access online education and benefit from telehealth services,” said FCCC CEO Joel Abraham in a statement.
Abraham added that Starlink would also bring more healthy competition to Fiji’s broadband market. “We anticipate more competitive pricing and enhanced service quality, making high-quality internet services more affordable and accessible to a wider range of consumers.”
Fiji is currently served by two main telecoms players. Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (ATH) owns Telecom Fiji, Vodafone Fiji and Fiji International. The other main mobile operator is Digicel, which is owned by Telstra via its acquisition of Digicel Pacific last year.
Separately, Manoa Kamikamica, deputy PM and Minister for Trade, Co-operatives, SMEs, and Communications, said Starlink’s LEO broadband connectivity would be a “game changer” for Fiji in terms of providing connectivity resiliency during natural disasters and cost-effectively rolling out broadband to unconnected populations in maritime communities.