" ITREALMS: MTN gets NBC nod to operate pay TV

Thursday, September 17, 2015

MTN gets NBC nod to operate pay TV

As part of the expansion of the MTN Group in Nigeria, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has finally granted operating license to the telecom giant, reports ITRealms.

Disclosing this Wednesday, the Director-General of NBC, Mr. EmekaMba while presenting the Commission’s journey so far on digital switchover, said that they have successfully licensed MTN Nigeria Limited to provide digital pay Tv broadcasting services.

I'm pleased to inform you that we have successfully licensed MTN Nigeria Ltd to use a part of the 700 MHz to provide digital pay TV broadcasting services,” he said.

Mba revealed that NBC used the licensing to raise the sum of N34 billion, which was very helpful in meeting its budget need upto about 50 per cent.

He used the opportunity urge other African countries struggle with funding for digital migration to take advantage of licensing.

“I am pleased to inform you, also, that through this singular move, Nigeria has once again pointed the way for other African countries struggling with the effort of finding financing for their own digital switchover programmes,” he said.

NBC chief executive officer also explained that the use of the band, 470 – 862MHz solely for UHF Television Broadcasting Service on a primary basis in Nigeria predates both the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

“As a matter of fact, most Administrations in ITU Region 1 use the entire 470 – 862 MHz for UHF Television Broadcasting prior to ITU WRC-2007 conference,” he said.

Pointing out that in in 2006, ITU planned the entire 470 – 862MHz frequency band for Digital UHF Television Broadcasting for ITU Region 1 to which the Nigerian administration belongs. 

Stressing that the planning of 470 – 862MHz frequency band for Digital UHF Television is referred to in the ITU circle as GE-06 Plan and after the signing of the agreements resulting from this plan it is now referred to as the GE-06 Agreement.

He was optimistic that this should clear any doubt as to where these frequencies belong until after the completion of the digital switch over.

On Set Top Boxes, he said, off-shore mass production and delivery of initial subvented boxes for Jos pilot project was envisaged to be completed by end of October, while the local manufacture of the set top boxes is expected to begin in April 2016.

NBC, he said, would conclude some critical activities with regard to signal transmission infrastructure by December 31, 2015.

These segment, Mba noted, include the publishing of the Request for Proposal (RFP), thereby concluding the National Signal Mapping, awarding the transmission Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), designating the ITS for Jos and beginning live digital transmission; and we plan to be done with these by the end of December, 2015.

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