The Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT) on Wednesday said it was happy about the passage of the Telecommunications Bill which paves the way for an open and competitive telecommunications sector.
GTT’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Justin Nedd told media operatives that the Bill’s passage offers a wide range of positive social and economic benefits for the country including accelerated rate of learning for all Guyanese and more certainty in the business environment.
But while GTT is happy about the move to liberalization, Nedd said it would seek to engage the government in negotiations.
Nedd explained that the negotiations are important for ensuring respect for contracts and the rule of law.
“We are ready to do this [engage the government] as quickly as possible… even if this can be done today, we are ready,” Nedd added.
While refusing to provide full details on GTT’s reasons for seeking negotiations at this point, Nedd said it was in a bid to ensure that existing contacts which GTT has with other services providers are respected.
He clarified that the company was not asking asking for its monopoly to remain in place.
Nedd would not say what is at stake for the company that has held a two decades old monopoly on landline and international calls.
With the passage of this Bill that monopoly stands to be broken, allowing for more operators to enter and for existing operators to expand their services.
“We are in favor of breaking the monopoly… we want the sector to be opened. It is good for the country and GTT would be fine,” the CEO said.
GTT said it looks forward to providing a wider range of services, adjustments to market rates for local and international calling, development of new regulations and the entry of new service providers.
The CEO was confident that the company will be able to give better internet and calling services to customers and promised to make a more comprehensive announcement in the near future.
The Telecommunications Bill was passed in the National Assembly on Monday night with a majority vote from the government benches, after hours of debate.