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TRAI notifies changes to telecom interconnection rules for fixed line networks

Telecom regulator TRAI on Friday notified certain changes to the telecom interconnection rules, paving the way for easier interconnectivity between any two fixed line networks and between fixed line and national long distance (NLD) networks.

An industry observer said that TRAI’s ‘Telecommunication Interconnection (Second Amendment) Regulations 2020’ will bring procedural clarity and convenience for fixed line operators, and also address areas like closure of interconnect points in event of service discontinuation within a short-distance charging area.

Outlining the amendments, TRAI said that within a service area, the location of points of interconnect for call between any two fixed line networks and fixed line and NLD networks will be at a place that is mutually agreed to between the interconnection provider and seeker.The term ‘interconnection’ refers to commercial and technical arrangements under which telecom service providers connect their equipment, networks, and services to enable their customers to have access to subscribers of other operators’ network.

If the two sides fail to come to an agreement, the location of point of interconnect (PoI) for such networks will be Long Distance Charging Centre (LDCC), the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) said in a statement.

“In such a case, the carriage charge for carriage of calls from LDCC to SDCC (Short Distance Charging Centres) and vice versa, as applicable, shall be paid by the interconnection seeker to the interconnection provider,” it added.

It said that existing call connect points between two fixed line networks or fixed line and NLD networks will remain in operation for a period of minimum five years or till such time the interconnected service providers mutually decide to close such points, whichever is earlier.

“The existing PoI at the SDCC level, for calls between PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) and PSTN or between PSTN and NLD network can be closed if the services of either of the interconnected service providers are discontinued in that SDCA (Short-Distance Charging Area),” TRAI said.

-Money Control

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