Government Cancels Licence of Hello Nepal   

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Government Cancels Licence of Hello Nepal   

November 29: The government has scrapped the licence of Nepal Satellite Telecom Pvt Ltd (Hello Nepal). The decision was taken after the failure of Hello Nepal to pay its longstanding dues to the government, informed the Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA).    
A meeting of the NTA board of directors on Friday took a decision to this effect. After the company failed to pay the dues until mid-July, the NTA on October 29 sought clarification from the company as per a decision taken by the NTA board on October 22. The company was given a 15-day timeframe to submit its clarification. The company responded that the NTA could not scrap its licence as it has demanded additional time period to pay the dues in installment in line with the cabinet decision, said the NTA Spokesperson Santosh Poudel.    
Unsatisfied with the response sent by the company, the NTA cancelled its licence citing other clauses in the the decision taken by the same Council of Ministers two years ago.
The company owns dues under several headings to the NTA. It is yet to pay frequency charge, royalty, amount to be deposited in the Rural Telecommunications Fund and license renewal fees.    
Prior to this, in July-August, 2019, a meeting of the NTA Board of Directors decided to rescind the license of the company. As per the provision, any company can apply to the Council of Ministers for the review of the NTA decision to repeal the license within 35 days of the decision. Based on the same provision, the company had proceeded for the review.    
Acting on the company’s appeal, a meeting of the Council of Ministers on January 6, 2020 agreed to give a facility of time extension to the company for repaying the dues while keeping the license validated.    
The company was advised to pay the first installment within in the same fiscal year (2019-20) and to clear all dues within the next five years. In case of the non-payment of dues within the given timeframe, the license would be automatically cancelled.    
Abiding by the Council of Ministers' decision, NTA had given it five years to pay Rs 1.387 billion. The company, however, had paid Rs 2.15 million to the NTA as the first installment    
The NTA decided to cancel the license citing the non-clearance of dues as demanded by the Council of Ministers. -- RSS   


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