According to Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), 5G services would take four to five years to launch in the country.
Dr Khawar Siddique Khokhar, PTA member gave briefing to the Senate’s Standing Committee on Information Technology that “two months requires furnishing a plan in this regard.” PTA is not ready to launch of the 5G technology yet. He hoped that the technology will be applicable by 2021.
PTA member informed that 5G related polices had been constituted in 2017 and the authority had planned to make framework for 5G in June this year. He said “The PTA issued a framework for test and development of future technologies, particularly fifth generation wireless networks in Pakistan, in June 2019”
Dr Khawar Siddique Khokhar talked about advertisement placed by Zong about 5G test that notice had been sent to Zong against issuing false advertisement. He further said that Zong had conducted a site test instead of network test. They are not authorized to do it because the 5G technology has not been introduced on commercial level. He clarified that Zong only got permission for three months of trial period restricted for use on commercial basis.
Dr Khawar Siddique Khokhar said “we will have to face multiple challenges in adoption of this technology, which includes the availability of spectrums and resolving spectrum’s fee, impacts of 5G on human health, right of ways, applications, security, and infrastructure is yet to be made”.
Senator Shahzad Waseem said that all concerned quarters should play a “crystal clear game” and equal opportunities should be provided to all. Senator Kulsoom Parveen noted that Zong had abused the permission of testing 5G.
Khokhar said we will have to face multiple challenges in adoption of this technology, including the availability of spectrums. The issue of spectrum fee is also yet too resolved. The analyses of the impacts of 5G on human health, right of ways, applications, security, and infrastructure is yet to be made.
IT secretary directed the PTA to take Senator Attique on board pertaining to a decision on the spectrum cost of 5G. Senator Attique Shaikh said “leading the test trial will be better for the authority”. In response, the PTA member said that the trial or operation of 5G is out of the mandate of the authority. Operators make preparations by their own around the world.
All network operators were making arrangements for a 5G test since October 2017″. Telenor had submitted an application for the test on July 23, Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) had submitted on August 8 and Mobilink and SCO had also submitted their applications for a trial on July 31.