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Which License is required by ISPs in Pakistan "Pakistan ISP License"?

Internet Services Providers (ISPs) have gained a lot of momentum in the past couple of decades. With the ever increasing internet bandwidth, improved and efficient infrastructure availability, better last mile connectivity and improved engineering usage, ISPs have changed the market dynamic in terms of creating their unique value proposition in niche segments as against to a time when there used to be less and less options available for the whole market to consume internet services.


Internet Services Providers (ISPs) are regulated and guided by the telecommunication authorities around the world and in the case of Pakistan, the concerned regulator is Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA). Without bringing in too much detail, let’s talk upfront and clearly on what license(s) is required by an Internet Services Provider (ISP) in Pakistan to operate legally [PTA ISP Licenses]. Below is the list of licences required:

1- Local Loop License (Fixed or Wireless) [PTA Local Loop License]

2- Class Value Added Services – Data (CVAS – Data) License [PTA CVAS License]

3- Type Approval for all the applicable infrastructure and equipment


The requirement for each one of the above licenses for an Internet Services Provider is now detailed as below:

1- Local Loop License requirement for Internet Services Provider (PTA Local Loop License for ISP – PTA ISP License)

As the term local loop implies, it refers to the infrastructure which is required to provide the last mile or end user connectivity from a network to the end user. This connectivity can both be in fixed or wireless forms. Now if the ISP intends to use or establish/build its own infrastructure then it will need to have the Local Loop License from Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) [Pakistan ISP License]. And if the ISP plans to use an already in-place and developed infrastructure built by some other party then the local loop license will not be required. In this case, the ISP will need to have the infrastructure/network sharing agreements with that third party.


2- Class Value Added Services (CVAS – Data) License requirement for Internet Services Provider (PTA CVAS License for ISP – PTA ISP License)


This is the mandatory license, which every ISP operating in Pakistan in any state and in any capacity needs for lawful operations. The Class Value Added Services – Data license grants the right to the ISP to provide Internet services in the defined area for fifteen years. Some of the key elements, which are part of the application of Class Value Added Services – Data License, include a detailed business plan covering the technical expertise of the team, the intended infrastructure and network roll-out plan, financial forecasts and technical details for the sustainable operational and maintenance plan.





3- Type Approval requirement for Internet Services Provider (PTA Type Approval for ISP – PTA ISP License)


For internet services providers, it is critical that any wireless equipment they are using should be Type Approved by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA). This can include the network devices, terminal equipment, access points etc. It is to be noted that Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA)’s team visits locations for all Class Value Added Services License (CVAS) and Local Loop License holders. One of the objectives of these site visits is to ensure that all equipment being used is the approved equipment.


So here we are after having explored all the applicable licenses for Internet Services Providers in Pakistan (Pakistan ISP License) from Local Loop License to Class Value Added Services License to Type Approval. Each one of these licenses have their own pre-requisites, timelines and financials involved. The experts at Nano Technology Solutions pioneer the process for each of these licences having helped hundreds of satisfied customers. We look forward to hearing from you at info@nanotechsol.com and to helping you become a national success.

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