Chad Telecom Regulator Condemns Unauthorized Marketing of Starlink Services

By : Samira Njoya

Date : lundi, 25 septembre 2023 12:42

Sattelite internet provider Starlink has expressed its interest in conquering the African market by 2024. To date, the company has launched operations in five countries and is looking to do the same in Chad, with plans to extend its reach to 23 African markets.

The Chadian Electronic Communications and Posts Regulatory Authority (ARCEP) has issued a warning to individuals illegally marketing and operating Starlink terminals in the country. In a press release published on social networks on Friday, September 22, the telecoms regulator warns offenders of the penalties provided for by law in the event of continuation of the aforementioned activities.

Providing unauthorized electronic communication services or maintaining the services despite legal orders to suspend it is punishable by one to five years imprisonment and fines ranging from XAF100 million ($162,500) to XAF200 million or one of the two penalties, the release informs quoting Article 113 of Law No. 014/PR/2014 on electronic communications.

ARCEP's release comes as the Starlink network is increasingly used in Chad. On social networks, users are approving the new services, which they say are bridging the digital divide in the country by providing Internet access to underserved communities at an affordable cost.

For the telecoms regulator, the problem lies in the license that Starlink would need to obtain before launching operations in the country. Two days earlier, ARCEP held a consultation meeting on Starlink's application to become a Satellite Internet Service Provider (ISP) in Chad. A response is expected in the next few days.  

In Chad, the legal use of Starlink should stimulate the digital sector and offer a high-speed Internet connection to a population that constantly complains about the poor quality and high costs of the Internet in the country. 

Samira Njoya


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