The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India vide its order dated 1st January, 2018 issued regulations pertaining to various aspects of interconnection such as interconnection agreement, framework for initial provisioning of ports, augmentation of Points of Interconnection (POIs), interconnection charges, and disconnection of POIs. These regulations come into effect from 1st February, 2018 and are applicable to all telecommunication service providers. Highlights:
- It is mandated that upon request from one service provider to enter into an interconnection agreement with another, the agreement must be entered into within thirty days of the request. Within five working days of the request, a draft interconnection agreement must be sent to the requesting party.
- A bank guarantee is liable to be furnished by the requesting party, if demanded, while entering into an interconnection agreement.
- Rights of the requesting party-
- Request to seek initial provisions of ports at POIs for a period of three months from date of initial connection.
- They can seek ports at POI from the other service provider for a period of two years from the date of establishment of initial connection to meet the demands of incoming and outgoing traffic at the POIs.
- Request for additional ports at POIs.
- The authority has also laid down a detailed framework for provisioning of ports.
- The interconnection charges (set-up charges and infrastructure charges) must be reasonable, transparent and non-discriminatory. It can be mutual negotiated, but subject to the directions issues by TRAI.
- The procedure for disconnection of POIs require the production of a show-cause notice with reasons and a notice of fifteen working days specifying the date of disconnection.
- Service providers now face financial disincentives upto one lakh per day per licensed service area if they contravene any of the regulations.