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UAE’s TRA Rejects Over 134,000 Mobile Number Switch Requests

UAE’s TRA Rejects Over 134,000 Mobile Number Switch Requests

Out of 190,185 mobile number porting requests received, only 55,555 were successfully transferred, the UAE’s telecom regulator said.

The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has said that the majority of applicants interested in switching telecom operators in the country have been rejected.

Some of the reasons for rejections were: the mismatch of subscriber’s name with the applicant name, not filling in the required fields and incorrect attachments, the regulator said in a statement.

Out of 190,185 mobile number porting requests received by the TRA, only 55,555 were successfully transferred with a staggering 134,222 rejected. The authority said that the implementation process of the service is 30 per cent complete as of May 18.

The mobile number portability (MNP) service, which was launched at the end of 2013, allows subscribers to switch between the two service providers Etisalat and du while retaining their existing number and the network code.

The TRA said that some of the challenges in applications included non-compliance with the licensees to deliver documents and the failure to complete all information.

The regulator added that it has received a number of complaints from subscribers about their MNP applications being rejected without a solid reason. The authority said it is working on verifying these cases with the licensees.

The TRA also urged the telecoms subscribers to be aware of their obligations that are outlined in contracts signed with the licensees before applying to switch operators.

The telecoms authority emphasised that it would continue to monitor the MNP process along with other accredited service providers and will take action when the need arises.

Previously, it warned both Etisalat and du to remove some of the ad campaigns, as they did not comply with the regulatory framework.

The MNP service, which was launched in the country after a delay of more than five years, is expected to promote competition between the operators.

Being a duopoly, the competition in the UAE’s telecom market has been relatively benign compared to other Gulf markets.

But the TRA has been working on opening up the market.

Recently, Etisalat said that it expects to complete a fixed network sharing deal with its rival du by the end of 2014.

Currently, both telecom operators offer fixed-line, broadband and television packages but not in the same districts. With the network sharing deal coming to fruition, the operators will not be restricted geographically.

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