TRAI recommends MIB should not introduce any fresh regulations in Cable TV distribution sector

TRAI recommends MIB should not introduce any fresh regulations in Cable TV distribution sector

The regulator said that the government may amend the existing rules and guidelines under the Cable


Mumbai: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has recommended to the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) that the government should not introduce any new regulations or take any corrective measures to enhance the competition in the cable TV distribution sector.

Trai has further requested the MIB to monitor but also intervene only at the appropriate time. However, Trai recommended, "The government may take suitable measures to facilitate & promote sharing of cable infrastructure by a local cable operator with Telecom Service Providers (TSP) to enable the last mile for provision of broadband services."

“The government may issue necessary amendments to existing rules/ guidelines, to enable the use of last mile infrastructure created by cable operators by TSPs for promoting broadband connections,” it wrote.

Trai further said that the government may amend the rules under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation), Act 1995 to explicitly indicate the following:

“Cable operators may strive to provide last mile access to Access service providers/Internet Service Providers in a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory manner for the proliferation of broadband services.”

On 19 February 2021, MIB sent a letter to TRAI where the government informed the authority that considerable time has passed on the recommendations on "Monopoly/Market Dominance in the Cable TV services on 26 November 2013" and the media and entertainment landscape has changed drastically since then, particularly with the advent of digital technologies in this sector. Therefore, MIB has requested Trai to provide a fresh set of recommendations for the development and expansion of the M&E sector.

For this, Trai issued a consultation paper seeking comments from stakeholders on 25 October 2021. The date of submission for comments and counter comments was extended continuously and Trai received comments on the consultation paper from 70 stakeholders and counter comments from 7 stakeholders. (recommendations are available on Trai's website). An open house discussion (OHD) was also held on 27 January 2022 in this regard through an online mode. After considering all comments and counter-comments received from stakeholders and further analysis of the issues, the regulator has now finalised its recommendations and issued it to the MIB.