Technology Minister Phillip Paulwell, has granted a licence to Porting Access B.V. of The Netherlands to administer number portability services in Jamaica.
The licence will take effect on March 16, 2015 and will be valid for 10 years.
It has been granted for Porting Access B.V to establish, operate, manage, coordinate and maintain a number portability central reference database and an automated central order handling system and related activities for the provision of number portability.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the Technology Minister said the granting of the licence culminates a series of activities which included the September 25, 2014 gazetting of the Telecommunications Act (Number Portability) Rules 2014.
The rules empower the minister to grant a licence to a third party to be the Number Portability Administrator.
Paulwell says the facility can be advantageous to the Jamaican consumer in many ways.
“It will allow Jamaicans to move from one service provider to another while retaining their telephone numbers which is considered an important point of reference and accessible point of contact,” he said.
“Importantly also, studies indicate that the introduction of number portability facilitates greater competition in the telecoms market which can ultimately result in lower prices and more innovative products and services. Number portability can also eliminate some of the costs, inordinate delays and inconvenience that businesses and individuals encounter when changing from one telecoms provider to another,” Paulwell said.
Number portability will be available for both mobile and fixed line services.