Speed up telecoms legislation – PSC, GCCI
The latest deferral of the second reading of the Telecommunications Bill has drawn comments from three senior private sector umbrella organisation officials, all of whom have told Stabroek Business that a point has been reached where the passage of the legislation ending the extant Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) monopoly had to be significantly accelerated.
Chairman of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) Ronald Webster has urged that such issues as might be delaying the long-anticipated telecommunications legislation in the National Assembly be resolved “as early as possible” in order that the country “can press ahead with a liberalised telecommunications environment.” Webster said the private sector had already gone on record saying that it was an advocate for an open economy. “That applies whether we are selling food or telecommunications services,” the PSC Chairman said.
President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) Clinton Urling told Stabroek Business that without making assumptions as to the reasons for the persistent delays, the juncture had been reached where the passage of the legislation had to be expedited. “The time has come for us to hasten this process and get the legislation passed in the National Assembly. I believe that there has been, for some time, agreement on the desirability of a liberalised telecommunications sector and it seems to me that the National Assembly must address the issue of the passage of the legislation without any further delay.”
Last week Prime Minister Samuel Hinds disclosed that government was still engaged in discussions with GT&T over issues pertaining to liberalisation though what those issues are has remained a closely guarded secret.