Roundup: for the week ending 15 May 2016

A roundup of the latest ICT/technology news from across the Caribbean region for the period Monday 9 May to Sunday 15 May 2016.

Monday, 9 May 2016

PM: BTC ‘given away for nothing’

Bahamas – Prime Minister Perry Christie said that, given the fact that government’s debt in connection with the legacy pension for workers of Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) is nearing $100 million, BTC was “given away for nothing”… more

URCA Fires Back At Cable On Regulatory Approach

Bahamas – Regulators have thrown criticism of their approach back at Cable Bahamas, saying they receive “numerous complaints of anti-competitive behaviour” by the two major carriers… more

BREAKING: Final BTL arbitration award may be as much as US$220 million

Belize – Reliable information to Breaking Belize News is that the arbitration tribunal deciding the value of the shares in Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) at the time of the first nationalization by Government in 2009 has set that figure at as much as 220 million US dollars… more

The Staggering Cost of BTL Acquisition Now Being Tallied

Belize – The full bill for the BTL acquisition is coming due and it’s in the hundreds of millions of dollars… more

GTT launches 4G service

Guyana – GTT today unveiled its 4G service… more

GTT launches 4G service; says rates cater for reduced mobile, landline earnings

Guyana – The Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT), which launched its 4G service on Monday, said its pricing plans cater for declining revenue from other services… more

Easy Money Solutions For Jamaicans

Jamaica – QUISK, a Silicon Valley, San Francisco, mobile-payment company, and Advanced Integrated Systems (AIS) – Jamaica’s transaction-processing provider, have partnered to provide mobile money solutions for Jamaica and the Caribbean… more

Parents Urged to Monitor Children’s Use of Social Media

Jamaica – Superintendent of Police, Merrick Watson, is appealing for parents to monitor their children’s activity on social media… more

Sutherland Global aims to transform Mandeville

Jamaica – Sutherland Global Services has already made significant impact with the employment of 800 “professionals” since last October at its business process outsourcing centre on Ward Avenue, in this south central town… more

Affordable access to telecommunications throughout underserved communities in St Lucia – NTRC/ USF

Saint Lucia – The Universal Service Fund (USF) regulations was established in 2008 under the Telecommunications Act (2000)… more

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

URCA to examine regime governing Skype, WhatsApp

Bahamas – By the summer of 2016, the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) will be looking at the regulatory environment and framework for over-the-top (OTT) services like Skype and WhatsApp,.. more

Digicel responds to reports of a third player

Barbados – Telecommunications provider Digicel said it was not bothered by the prospect of a third company entering the local market… more

Schools get new computers

Barbados – THREE MORE PRIMARY schools received computers for the Khan Academy Mathematics Initiative this morning… more

Dominican_Republic FlagDominican Telecom aims to shield children from Web threats

Dominican Republic – The Dominican Telecom Institute (Indotel) and Justice Ministry work to implement a National Cybersecurity Strategy, with a special section aimed at children and adolescents, to ensure their protection when they use the Web and make them become “true digital citizens.” … more

E-Governance Unit gets boost from India, China training

Guyana – The E-Governance Unit within the Ministry of Public Telecommunications has received a boost from the Governments of India and China… more

BCJ Denies Reports Of Impending Regulations For Internet Protocol TV

Jamaica – Chairman of the Broadcasting Commission of Jamaica (BCJ) professor Hopeton Dunn has denied reports that the commission will soon be regulating Internet Protocol television (IPTV) in Jamaica… more

The future of ICT*

Trinidad and Tobago – Fantastic opportunities await the bold women who choose a career in ICT. Blink | bmobile took the opportunity on International Girls in ICT Day to encourage female pupils to study ICT and aspire to the highest positions in ICT businesses… more

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Minister promises GATE cadets outstanding stipend

Antigua and Barbuda – Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology Melford Nicholas said the approximately 39 cadets from the Government Assisted Technology Endeavor (GATE) will be paid on Friday… more

B.T.L. Announces Record Earnings

Belize – As we reported earlier, government will have to pay more than two hundred million dollars to Dunkeld in an arbitration award for the expropriation of Telemedia… more

B.T.L. Award, How Much Will G.O.B. Have to Fork Over?

Belize – The decision of an arbitration award for B.T.L. shares is perhaps weeks away, but there is early information suggesting that the value to be paid to Dunkeld International and other former shareholders will be in the range of five dollars and sixty cents per share… more

BTL Reports 10% Spike In Revenue

Belize – But as the major shareholder in BTL, government does have some reason for optimism… more

ICTA probes C&W head’s right to work

Cayman Islands – Allegations that local telecommunications company Cable & Wireless (Cayman Islands) Ltd has been misleading the immigration department over its senior management team were given credibility Wednesday when the Information and Communications Technology Authority issued a statement asking for the current CEO’s replacement with a person who is “legally resident in the country”… more

T-Mobile signs Cuba roaming deal

Cuba – T-Mobile has signed an interconnect and roaming agreement with Empresa De Telecomunicaciones De Cuba, SA (ETECSA), the Cuban telecommunications company… more

Thursday, 12 May 2016

BTC Wants 50% Cut To Cable’s Roaming

Bahamas – The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) is demanding a 50 per cent cut to the time its new Cable Bahamas-managed mobile rival is allowed to use its network, arguing that 36 months is “too lenient”… more

Cable Shareholders Suffer $14.37m Loss Over Us Writedown

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas shareholders suffered a collective $14.371 million net loss for 2015, driven by a one-off $20.5 million accounting ‘write down’ associated with its US operations… more reports uptick in revenue

Belize – Belize Telemedia Limited’s chair of the executive committee Anwar Barrow and other executives of the state-owned company yesterday afternoon briefed the media on its preliminary earnings for this year… more

BTL valued at 253 million!

Belize – The government of Belize has announced that the Permanent Court of Arbitration Tribunal has issued a draft decision on the valued BTL… more

ICTA pulls rank on Cable & Wireless

Cayman Islands – The Information and Communications Technology Authority (ICTA) has pulled the plug on discussions with senior management at Cable & Wireless (Cayman Islands) Ltd as it says it has “uncovered some troubling irregularities” as it relates to the legal status of employees engaged in licensing discussions with the Authority… more

Landline competition likely

Guyana – As Guyana prepares for formal liberalization of the telecommunications sector, Digicel is eyeing the provision of landline services, prompting the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT) to call for a level playing field… more

Friday, 13 May 2016

CBL, BTC respond to proposed national roaming agreement

Bahamas – Bahamian telecoms regulator the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) has published industry responses to its proposal to impose a significant market power (SMP) obligation on incumbent Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC), forcing it to provide access to its network to newcomer Cable Bahamas Ltd (CBL)-managed NewCo via a national roaming agreement… more

Third suspect charged in BTC store robbery

Bahamas – A third person was charged in a magistrate’s court yesterday afternoon in connection with a break-in at the Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) store at RND Plaza on John F. Kennedy Drive in late April… more

Barrow’s HALF BILLION DOLLAR Bukut!! – “We [taxpayers] must pay,” says PM, six years after BTL takeover

Belize – Prime Minister Dean Barrow returned today after a five-day trip to the United States of America for medical reasons… more

GOB may still owe $168 million for BTL

Belize – The Government of Belize (GOB) may still owe the former owners of the BTL (Belize Telecommunications Ltd.) BZ $168 million as compensation for its acquisition of 45,199,961 BTL shares in August 2009… more

John Briceno attacks BTL compensation award

Belize – The Government of Belize has more or less confirmed the final payment to be made to the former owners of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) for the two nationalizations of the company between 2009 and 2011, subject to a final ruling by the Netherlands’ Permanent Court of International Arbitration… more

Opposition Leader Says Belizeans were Hoodwinked with the BTL Takeover

Belize – Belize stands to pay millions of dollars to Lord Michael Ashcroft following the nationalization of the Belize Telemedia Limited in 2009… more

LIME now changed to Flow BVI

British Virgin Islands – The British Virgin Islands (BVI) today joined 14 other Cable & Wireless markets across the Caribbean that have undergone a complete brand transformation as the new Flow replaces the former LIME brand… more

Cayman_Islands flag (Wikipedia)C&W now subject to immigration enquiry

Cayman Islands – Following news this week that the Information and Communications Technology Authority (ICTA) had raised concerns about the legal status of the Cable & Wireless CEO here in Cayman, the immigration department has confirmed that it has opened an investigation… more

Regulator tells telecom company to get new CEO

Cayman Islands – Difficulties regarding legal residency status with at least one senior executive at Cable & Wireless (Cayman Islands) Ltd. have led to a formal inquiry by Cayman’s telecommunications regulator, the agency announced late Wednesday… more

BUSINESS BYTE: Digicel launches 10th anniversary promotions in Dominica

Dominica – Digicel is giving its customers a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash and prizes as part of its 10th anniversary celebrations… more

Digicel celebrates 10 years; over US$50-million invested in Dominica

Dominica – As Digicel celebrates its 10th year of operations on the island, Country Manager of the company, Richard Stanton has revealed that the company has invested over US$50 million in the last decade in Dominica… more

Dominican Republic’s leading online realtor launches redesigned website

Dominican Republic – The online realtor specialized in Dominican Republic real estate on Thursday launched a redesigned website, with features that allow easy access to properties across the country… more

Guyana taps FCC for better spectrum management, telecoms regulation

Guyana – The Guyana government hopes that expertise recently shared by top officials of the United States’ Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will help create a better regulatory environment… more

ECTEL to commemorate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day –

Regional – The Eastern Caribbean Telecommunications Authority, ECTEL, will join the world to commemorate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2016, on Monday, May 17th… more

Flow Gives Customers More Self Help Access via New State-of-the-Art Interactive Voice Response (IVR) System

Regional – In its continuing effort to give customers more ways to access its services and transform its customer experience, Flow has introduced an upgraded state-of-the-art Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system which facilitates self-serve options 24 hours per day, 7 days per week… more

Saturday, 14 May 2016

New mindset needed

Barbados – The manufacturing sector is poised to play a significant role in the future growth of Barbados’ economy. However, some key changes must be made in order for this to be achieved, officials say… more

DirectoryGY launched as official jubilee app

Guyana – A new application developed by local entrepreneurs – DirectoryGY was last evening declared the official app for Guyana’s 50th Anniversary celebration by Telecommunication and Tourism Minister Cathy Hughes at its official launching… more

Guyana flag (Wikipedia)Local animated TV series for September launch

Guyana – Tinniben Animation and E-Networks are set to launch Guyana’s first episodic animated television series, Nancy’s School Daze, which will begin airing in September… more

U.S. telecoms authority offers Govt. help in developing sector

Guyana – US telecommunication authorities have offered Guyana help in managing the country’s spectrum and regulatory practices… more

ECTEL Woos Girls To ICT

Regional – THE Eastern Caribbean Telecommunications Authority, ECTEL, will join the world to commemorate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day on Monday. ECTEL is also at the same time recognizing girls in ICT Day which was observed on April 28, 2016… more

FLOW contributes to success of Jazz

Saint Lucia – Flow has congratulated the St. Lucia Tourist Board on the staging of yet another successful St. Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival… more

FLOW notice to customers

Saint Lucia – Flow wishes to advise all customers that we have incurred significant damage to our Reduit Cabinet 8 located in the Windjammer junction due to a vehicular accident… more

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Digicel Barbados Gives Prepaid Customers Even More Data

Barbados – Digicel Barbados has announced the launch of its new suite of best value data plans which give prepaid customers even more data, plus greater freedom to use their data the way they want… more

Local company launches ‘everything Guyana’ app

Guyana – Thanks to a team of local technological developers and entrepreneurs, access to a full service directory for ‘everything Guyana’ can now be in the palm of your hands with, a new software application that was launched on Friday evening at the Pegasus hotel… more

Intermittent dial tone a constant annoyance

Jamaica – Dear Claudienne, For many years my landline LIME phone has had an intermittent dial tone. Service is out for hours, days or weeks, and calls are often cut off… more

Local companies take advantage of recession

Trinidad and Tobago – US-based Rockwell Automation, the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and information technology, was in T&T recently where they partnered with their only local authorised distributor, Warren-ECM of Charlieville, Chaguanas, to train key people from various industries to improve competitiveness… more


Image credits:  journalismthatmatters (flickr);  Wikipedia;  Belize Web;  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia;