PTA has issued a terse (three page) MVNO Framework. While the provisioning of MVNO operations was provided in the Cellular Mobile Policy 2004, the brevity of the subject matter left a lot of guessing work for those who wanted to offer the service.
The framework calls for, among other things, separate number series for MVNO operators and the QoS liability has been tied with the MVNO and not the parent MNO. The framework also offers some pro-MVNO clauses such as the one that does not allow a parent MNO to discontinue the services of an MVNO without the permission of PTA. This clause can open doors to conflicts between the MVNO and MNOs.
Telecard was probably the first operator to offer MVNO-type services on its limited mobility Wireless Local Loop operations in Pakistan. A number of such (wll)-MVNOs had been operating in Telecard’s network in the PCO business where the business is driven by the command of a commercial entity on the customers of a given region.
With constant capacity buildup by Mobilink, Ufone and now Paktel, excess infrastructure capacity will soon become a reality and selling out that capacity will soon become a big business challenge. The MVNO framework will allow a formal way to these cellular operators to sell of their network capacities to newer marketing outfits that better understand their own customer niches and can probably provider some extra value added services to their crowds.