Saturday, July 01, 2006

Sri Lanka Moves Fast, Approves Satcos

The Sri Lanka Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) in Colombo has moved fast to legalise cable TV and satellite TV companies through an agreed annual license fee of Rps 500,000 (nearly US$5,000).

The move comes after three key satellite TV operators, CBNSat, SATNet and LBN faced closure orders recently for operating without a license.

At a time of World Cricket Series and World Cup Soccer broadcasts, the move by the authorities had angered subscribers to the systems whose screens were blacked out.

Cable distribution networks and satellite communications networks have been given until July 21 to apply for a license to be valid for 5 years.

A condition of the license is that a licensee cannot establish their own downlinks but go through controlled facilities.

The move will flush out the many mom and pop cable TV operators carrying free-to-air broadcasts on a low operational cost basis.

[Digital Broadcast Vendor News Asia] carried the story earlier of the closure order and pending court case of CBNSat.

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