Ofta kills off PNETS license system

Robert Clark
20 Oct 2009

Ofta has streamlined carrier licensing in Hong Kong, killing off the 20-year-old PNETS categories in favor of a single service-based license.

The regulator considered but rejected the idea of replacing PNETs (Public Non-Exclusive Telecommunications Services) with a class license because it lacked the teeth to enforce compliance.

Ofta said that since the introduction of Class 1 and Class 2 SBO (services-based operator) license in 2006, the PNETS system had become “obsolete”.

Since the 1980s, Ofta has issued licenses http://www.ofta.gov.hk/en/tas/sbo/tas20091019.pdf in eight PNETS categories, including external telecom service (ETS), international VAN (IVAN), miscellaneous VAS, and mobile virtual network operator (MVNO).

From October 30, PNETS licenses will be subsumed under the SBO (services-based operator) license, Ofta announced yesterday following a seven-month consultation.

Ofta said it expected to replace all the existing PNETS and SBO licenses within a year.

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