TRAI changes telecom interconnection regulation and issues draft

TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) announced the draft Telecommunication Interconnection (Amendment) Regulations, 2018.

TRAI is seeking comment from stakeholders by 18 May, 2018. They can contact SK Singhal, advisor (BB&PA) at TRAI for any clarification / information.
wireless data userTRAI issued a new draft in the wake of protest from some telecom operators in India. TRAI said its Telecommunication Interconnection Regulations, 2018 came into effect from February 1. But some stakeholders expressed difficulties in implementing the regulations. TRAI conducted meetings with the service providers on 9 March and 19 March, 2018 to understand their perspective.

A service provider may request the other service provider for additional ports at a POI, if the projected utilisation of the capacity of such POI at the end of 60 days from the date of placing the request, is likely to be more than 85 percent and such projected utilization of the capacity of POI shall be determined on the basis of the daily traffic for the preceding 60 days at the POI during busy hour.

The time-frame for provisioning of ports for initial interconnection and augmentation will be increased to maximum 42 working days.

Each service provider shall provide its forecast of busy hour outgoing traffic for each POI, at intervals of every six months, to the interconnecting service provider and the first such forecast shall be provided within 60 days of the commencement of the regulations.

The port charges and infrastructure charges for all ports provided before the 1 February, 2018 shall continue to be payable as per the terms and conditions which were applicable to them before 1 February, 2018.

TRAI said conversion of ports from bothway to one way should not affect the commercial arrangement already in place between the two connecting service providers. The service providers may mutually decide the terms and conditions for provisioning of such ports including port charges for new ports, to be added on the basis of outgoing traffic.

The interconnection charges such as port charges and infrastructure charges for all existing ports of the existing POIs shall continue to be as per existing arrangement between the interconnecting service providers.

An average ‚ȧ0.5% POI congestion during busy hour is permitted as per Network Service Quality requirement. The traffic may increase sporadically due to unforeseen circumstances. During such circumstances, higher level of capacity utilisation may result into congestion at POIs.

Congestion at POIs may have spiralling effect on functioning of the other elements of the network also. It is advisable to dimension the POIs capacities in such a manner that in most of the situations, congestion on POIs can be avoided. Generally the core networks are also dimensioned for 70 percent utilisation during normal times.

The TRAI amendment proposes change 70 percent to 85 percent and 60 percent to 75 percent to ensure efficient utilisation of the available resources. The change in time period from 30 days to 65 days will provide a reasonable window for analysis and provisioning of additional ports.

The traffic forecasts are used for planning of sufficient switching and transmission capacity and hence the requirement of providing traffic forecasts initially within 60 days and thereafter on a biannual basis may be supplemented.

The time-frame for provisioning of ports for initial interconnection and augmentation may be increased to maximum 42 working days. This period may get further reduced to less than 30 working days if the seeker takes actions on its own end promptly.