This note summarises recent announcements from the telecommunications regulators and other telecommunications news outlets in Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Where appropriate, content from the relevant announcements has been incorporated into the text below.

Iraq

Communications and Media Commission (CMC) met to discuss CMC Law

The CMC held a consultative meeting with a number of Iraqi media and legal figures as well as civil society organisations to discuss the CMC draft law. The meeting aimed to involve stakeholders in developing the law and amending the articles before finalizing. Further meetings shall follow.

See http://www.cmc.iq/en/morenews/index477.html.

Kuwait

National Council has announced its consideration to draft a law to establish a Telecommunications Regulatory Authority

The new Telecommunications Regulatory Authority would assume the Transportation Ministry’s responsibilities for the telecommunications sector, including radio frequencies. The National Council will base many of the definitions in the draft law on the 1955 Jordanian Communications Act.

See http://www.arabtimesonline.com/NewsDetails/tabid/96/smid/414/ArticleID/197206/reftab/36/t/Final-draft-on-IT-body-among-several-pending-bills-passed/Default.aspx.

Oman

Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) holds public consultation

The TRA announced it is studying the policy of registering internet domain names under the two top levels (.om) and (.عمان) for individuals.

See http://www.tra.gov.om/newsite1/NewsDetails.aspx?newsid=284.

TRA responds to comments on Licensing Framework Public Consultation

The TRA published a document summarising responses to the consultation. The document is available at http://www.tra.gov.om/newsite1/NewsDetails.aspx?newsid=286.

Qatar

ictQATAR opens a public consultation on a draft Radio Spectrum Fees Policy and Fees Schedule

ictQATAR invites informed comments from interested parties in public consultation. Under the draft proposal, no fees will be payable when radio spectrum is used in accordance with a Class Radio Frequency License, however, fees will be applied for the use of radio spectrum under Individual Radio Spectrum Licenses granted by ictQATAR.

See http://www.ictqatar.qa/en/news-events/news/ictqatar-opens-public-consultation-draft-radio-spectrum-fees-policy-and-fees.

ictQATAR opens a public consultation on its regulatory framework for Open Access to Megaprojects

ictQATAR invites informed comments from interested parties in public consultation. ictQATAR seeks to ensure that the country will successfully master the development objectives set out in the Qatar National Vision 2030 and in advance of the FIFA Football World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

See http://www.ictqatar.qa/en/news-events/news/ictqatar-seeks-comments-regulatory-framework-open-access-megaprojects.

UAE

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) issued an explanatory statement regarding policies around Skype

The TRA issued an explanatory statement in response to a locally published newspaper article entitled “TRA: Illegal access to the network results in a fine of Dh1 million – imprisonment or fine is the penalty for using (Skype) to make telephone calls.” The TRA denied the content of the article and confirming the inaccuracy and invalidity of the published information.

See http://www.tra.gov.ae/news_Explanatory_Statement-512-1.php.

Central Bank launches blueprint with lenders and telecommunication companies to expand mobile commerce

The Central Bank has agreed on a road map for improving mobile phone banking services in a bid to raise the value of mobile transactions in the UAE.