MTN sues NCA over moves to restrict its growth

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Telecom giant MTN Ghana says it is suing the National Communications Authority (NCA) over the regulator’s decision to impose some restrictions likely to inhibit the company’s growth and innovativeness.

The NCA on June 8 declared MTN Ghana as a Significant Market Power (SMP), a status that has caused the NCA to impose special regulatory restrictions on the telecom leader.

According to MTN Ghana, the restrictions to be enforced would potentially limit the company’s growth, performance, innovativeness and its competitiveness in the telecoms market.

It suggested in a statement Friday that the NCA did not follow due process in the matter.

“Regretfully, the manner of the recent declaration of MTN as a Dominant/SMP raises concerns about clear procedural breaches and substantive issues,” the statement claimed.

Although it has since being declared an SMP engaged the NCA and other stakeholders to share its position on the matter, the regulator continues to implement some specified interventions against it.

On the back of that, MTN Ghana said it has after much consultation, and as a last resort, taken the “difficult decision to resort to the Law Courts for redress in the form of a judicial review of NCA’s decision”

This, it explained, is “to ensure the observance of the requirements of procedural fairness”.

“MTN Ghana would like to reiterate that it is not opposed to steps by the regulator to enhance further the highly competitive Ghana telecoms industry and is indeed prepared to support the regulator to that end,” it added.

However, it said the regulatory authority “must follow the applicable legislations and global industry best practices”.

“As a responsible and ethical leader, MTN is neither aware of any industry economics / market study to establish market failure nor has MTN taken any steps or engaged in anti-competitive behavior”

Despite the decision to go to court, MTN said it is still opened to dialogue to achieve an amicable resolution to the matter.

MTN said it has over the years shown confidence in the Ghana telecommunications sector by its continued investment in hitherto undervalued ventures such as rural telephony, broadband services, 4G technology, new innovations and mobile money.

It said that was done to support the development of the industry and to deliver on its belief that “everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life”.

“We have indeed collaborated with government over the period to invest in priority projects that have all contributed to our current position in the market,” it said.

MTN Ghana said its commitment to the delivery of a bold new digital world in Ghana continues to be paramount and that the company remains focused on providing the enabling technology to support Ghana’s digital economy particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

By Stephen Kwabena Effah||Ghana


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