Jamaica may have new Telecom Companies

The Jamaican government is set to auction two licences, to lure new entrants into the telecommunications market. The licences will utilize the 700 MHz band. The signal is said to be more penetrative, and will use fewer towers, within any specific geographic location.

Telecommunications Minister, Phillip Paulwell, made the announcement in parliament, yesterday afternoon (March 26). Mr. Paulwell states, that there will be greater penetration, of technological advancements, with the use of the 700 MHz band.

cell companies in the Caribbean

Mister Paulwell says the government will begin pre-auction activities in early April, with the issuance of an information memorandum, which will be posted internationally, and on the web-sites of the telecoms ministry, and spectrum management authority, with a winner announced in mid-July.

The telecoms minister states, that the successful bidders, will benefit from reduced cost of roll-out, on the 700 MHz band.


He disclosed that existing players could participate, but he did not disclose the reserve price.

In the meantime, the Opposition JLP has raised concerns, about the viability of auctioning, two new licenses.

Opposition Spokesman on Finance, Audley Shaw, questioned whether there is enough room, for new players to enter the market.

Mr. Shaw pointed to the exit of Claro, which purchased the operations of Centennial, which had purchased a licence, to operate in Jamaica.

Telecoms Minister, Philip Paulwell assured the Parliament, that despite the high level of tele-density, it is restricted to voice telephony.

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