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Bangladesh steps into 4G era

The Daily Dawn

Bangladesh has entered an era of digital connectivity as three mobile phone operators rolled out the 4G mobile phone services in the country on Monday night.

They launched the 4G services in the cities of Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna and Sylhet soon after getting the licences from Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC).

BTRC Chairman Shahjahan Mahmood officially handed over the licences to the chief executive officers of four mobile phone operators - Grameenphone, Robi, Banglalink and Teletalk -- at a function organised by Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh (AMTOB) at Dhaka Club.

The operators also received the tech neutrality and radio communication apparatus licences at the function.

The mobile phone companies will launch the high-speed internet services in other major cities and towns gradually.

Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology Minister Mustafa Jabbar was present at the programme as the chief guest.

Earlier on February 13, BTRC held the 4G spectrum auction for allocating new frequencies to mobile operators. The government earned Tk 5268.51 crore in revenue.

Banglalink took 10.6 MHz spectrum from different two bands - 2100 and 1800, with a price of Tk. 2558 crore while Grameenphone took 5MHz from 1800 band with a price of Tk. 1284 crore.

Robi did not buy any spectrum as it and Airtel have merged into one operator while Teletalk has already enough spectrum to launch the 4G services.

The government also earned another Tk 850.4 crore as tech neutrality fees from three operators: GP, Banglalink and Robi, and VAT of total Tk. 5289.08 crore.

Teletalk, Citycell, Banglalink, Grameenphone and Robi participated in the auction. Citycell was not allowed as it had lost the operator licence.unb

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