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Mobile operators reproved

Sum Manet / Khmer Times Share:

The Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia urged mobile network operators to prioritise service quality over profit maximization, and asked companies to do more to expand network coverage in the kingdom.

“We ask mobile operators to focus on strengthening signal quality and expanding the network to the most remote and rural areas of the country,” said Im Vutha, spokesman for TRC.

According to Mr Vutha, companies in the sector are too focus on competing for customers by undercutting competitors with cheaper packages, and often disregard the importance of quality service. Operators have also failed to comply with regulatory guidelines issued by TRC and the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, he said.

“Because of the prevalent emphasis on competition thorough attractive prices, signal quality is often poor and we still don’t have access to the mobile network or the internet in many rural areas of the country.

“Competition can be beneficial for the consumer, but companies cannot just focus on profit. They also need to consider their contribution to society and the country,” Mr Vutha said.

Mr Vutha said prevalent cut-throat practices in the sector have led to the early demise of many operators, caused dissatisfaction among users and failed to help the government in reaching its goal of making mobile networks available everywhere in the country.

To aid the development of Cambodia’s ICT sector, including financing the expansion of mobile networks, two funds were recently established, the research & development fund (R&D fund), and the universal service obligation fund (USO fund).

Telecommunications companies contribute each year set percentages of their gross revenue to these funds.

“Part of the collected money is used to expand network coverage in the country and reach the most remote areas,” he said.

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