A telecommunications service provider (TSP) is a type of communications service provider that has traditionally provided telephone and similar services. This category includes incumbent local exchange carriers, competitive local exchange carriers, and mobile wireless communication companies.
While some people use the terms “telecom service provider” and “communications service provider” interchangeably, the term TSP generally excludes Internet service providers (ISPs), cable companies, satellite TV, and managed service providers.
TSPs provide access to telephone and related communications services. In the past, most TSPs were government owned and operated in most countries, due to the nature of capital expenditure involved in it. But today there are many private players in most regions of the world, and even most of the government owned companies have been privatized.
In Egypt the government has felt the importance of developing a legal regime governing this area, Therefore, the Egyptian parliament has issued the Telecommunication Regulation Law which says:
A national authority managing the Telecommunication utility shall be established and named “The National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority”. The Authority shall have a public juristic personality; it shall be subordinated to the Minister Concerned and shall have its head quarters in Cairo and Giza. The NTRA shall have the right to establish branches all over the Arab Republic of Egypt.
The NTRA shall aim to regulate the Telecommunication Service and to enhance and deploy services in compliance with the most advanced technology means satisfying the Users’ needs at the most appropriate prices. The NTRA shall also encourage national and international investment in this field within free competition rules.
Licenses and Permits:
It is prohibited to establish or operate Telecommunication Networks, provide Telecommunication Services, by-pass international telephone calls or announce any of these without obtaining a license from the NTRA in accordance with the provisions of this Law and its executive resolutions.
However, no license shall be required to be obtained from NTRA to establish or operate a
Private Telecommunication Network that does not use radio telecommunication systems.
The licensed Operator shall notify the NTRA of the Private Networks established on his Infrastructure.
The NTRA resolutions regarding licenses shall be published in the Official Gazette or any of the widespread daily newspapers at the expense of the licensee, provided that publishing includes all licensing conditions.
Applying for any of these licenses shall be by filling the application forms issued by the NTRA and accompanied by data and documents specified by the NTRA, especially those proving the technical and financial capability of the applicant. Applications shall include the suggested basis for pricing of services and methods of calculation.
Decision regarding an application for license shall be taken within a period not exceeding
90 days from the date the applicant submitted all requested documents to the NTRA, otherwise the application shall be considered rejected.
The license shall determine the licensee’s obligations including, in particular, the following:
1. The type of the service and the used technology.
2. Duration of license.
3. The specific geographical boundaries for providing the service, coverage plan
by wire/radio and stages of implementation.
4. Measurements of the quality and the efficiency of the service.
and a lot of technical maters.
The licensee is prohibited in all cases, to waive his license for establishing or operating a network or for providing Telecommunication Services to any other party except with a prior written consent from the NTRA, according to the conditions to be determined by the Board of Directors.
It is prohibited to import, manufacture or assemble any Telecommunication Equipment without a license from the NTRA according to the standards and specifications approved by it.
The NTRA shall obtain consent from the Armed Forces, the National Security Authority and the Ministry of Interior before importing, manufacturing, assembling, possessing or using for its favor and before it grants authorizations to the units of the administrative authorities of the State including ministries, authorities, municipal administrative units and organizations, entities, companies of all types, individuals and others, with respect to Telecommunication Equipment specified by a resolution from the Minister of Defense in coordination with National Security Entities.
Provisions of the first paragraph shall not apply to equipment used in radio and television
broadcasting of the Radio and television Union provided that the Union shall obtain the
consent mentioned in the second paragraph in accordance with the provisions stated
Frequency Spectrum Management and Usage Licensing:
The Frequency Spectrum is a limited natural resource and the NTRA is the entity responsible for regulating and managing all matters related to it in accordance with the provisions of this Law.
It is prohibited to use a Frequency or a Frequency Band without obtaining a license from the NTRA. The NTRA shall specify the conditions and rules for granting such licenses. The rules and procedures necessary to be followed in applying for the license shall be announced.
The license shall be issued within a period not exceeding 90 days from the date of submission of all necessary documents with due consideration to the requirements of the Armed Forces and National Security Entities.
The licensee shall only use a Frequency or a Frequency Band in accordance with the license conditions. In case of breach of such conditions, the NTRA shall have the right to cancel such license.
Provisions of this Article shall not apply to Frequency Bands exclusively allocated by the International Telecommunication Union for services provided by the Radio and Television Union. Provisions of this Article shall also not apply to the existing networks used by the Radio
1- Whoever premeditatedly demolishes any part of the Telecommunication Networks, Infrastructure, buildings, constructions or any of the telecommunication lines, or make it wholly or partially unusable in any way that results in disconnection of telecommunication, even if temporarily, shall be liable to prison confinement and to a fine of not less than fifty thousand pounds and not exceeding one hundred thousand pounds.
If any of the deeds referred to in the previous clause occurs as a result of negligence or inadvertence, the penalty shall be confinement to prison for a period not exceeding six months and a fine of not less than five hundred pounds and not exceeding one thousand
pounds, or either penalty.
In all cases, the court shall, automatically pass a ruling obliging the perpetrator to pay the value of whatsoever has been demolished or damaged or the costs of restoration, without prejudice to the right of indemnity.
2- Whoever carries out any of the following acts without obtaining a license from the NTRA according to the provisions of this law shall be liable to prison for a period of not less than six months and not exceeding five years and a fine of not less than fifty thousand pounds and not exceeding five hundred thousand pounds, or either penalty:
1. Establishing or operating Telecommunication Networks.
2. Establishing Telecommunication Networks Infrastructure.
3. Providing Telecommunication Services.
4. By-passing international telephone calls by any means whatsoever.
A ruling shall be issued confiscating all equipment, sets and connections used in perpetrating such crimes. A ruling shall also be passed obliging the convict to pay suitable compensation in the last case item No 4.
3- Whoever perpetrates any of the following deeds during the performance of his job in the field of Telecommunications or because of it shall be liable to a penalty of confinement to prison for a period of not less three months and a fine of not less than five thousand pounds and not exceeding fifty thousand pounds, or either penalty:
1. Annunciation, publishing or recording the content of any Telecommunication message or part of it without any legal basis.
2. Hiding, changing, obstructing or altering any or part of Telecommunication message that he might have received.
3. Refraining from sending any Telecommunication message after being assigned to dispatch it.
4. Divulging without due right any information concerning Telecommunication Networks Users or their incoming or outgoing communication.
4- Whoever waives his Radio Frequency Usage license before obtaining the NTRA approval shall be liable to a penalty of confinement to prison for a period of not less than three months and a fine of not less than twenty thousand pounds and not exceeding one hundred thousand pounds, or either penalty. In addition such license shall be revoked.
5- Whoever divulges, publishes or spreads any information obtained by virtue or because of his position about an entity working in the telecommunication field, shall be liable to a penalty of confinement to prison and a fine not less than twenty thousand Pounds and not exceeding one hundred thousand pounds or either penalty, in case such acts result in unfair competition between the entities working in this field.
6- Without prejudice to the right for suitable indemnity, a penalty of confinement to prison and a fine not less than five hundred pounds and not exceeding twenty thousand pounds or either penalty shall be inflicted on whoever:
1. Uses or assists in using illegitimate means to conduct telecommunication correspondence.
2. Premeditatedly disturbs or harasses a third party by misusing Telecommunication Equipment.
7- Subject to the provision of the last clause in article (48) of this law, a penalty of confinement to prison for a period of not less than one year and a fine of not less than twenty thousand pounds and not exceeding fifty thousand pounds or either penalty shall be inflicted on whoever carries out any of the following deeds without obtaining a permit therefor from the competent authorities:
1. Importing or manufacturing any of the Telecommunication Equipment for the purpose of marketing in the country.
2. Possessing, installing, or operating any radio Telecommunication Set. This penalty shall not apply in the case of radio sets for which the NTRA issues a General License permitting the use, assembly, or operation of such sets.
The penalty shall be multiplied in its lowest or highest limits in case of recurrence. The penalty shall be confinement to jail if the importing, manufacturing, or possession without permit occurs with the aim of disturbing National Security. In all cases, the court shall pass a ruling confiscating the equipment and sets subject of the crime.
8- A penalty of confinement to prison for a period not exceeding six months and a fine of not less twenty thousand pounds and not exceeding fifty thousand pounds or either penalty shall be inflicted on whoever, without due right, premeditatedly intercepts or causes interference to radio waves assigned to third parties. The court shall in addition pass a ruling confiscating the equipment and sets used in perpetrating the crime.
*** The same penalties as prescribed for the deeds perpetrated in violating the provisions of
this law shall be inflicted on the person in charge of actual management of the juridical person, if his awareness of these deeds is established, and that his default on the duties imposed on him by such management has contributed to the perpetration of the crime. The juridical person shall be jointly liable for the settlement of the sentenced financial penalties and compensations as ruled by the court.