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NEPAL

  • "Nepal officially unlicenses WiFi; so has India: when will the rest of S Asia?" by Rohan Samarajiva, LIRNE Asia, 18 September 2006: from an unofficial translation of the Nepal Gazette, Part 56, Number 20: "Notice of Ministry of Information and Communication. This notice has been published to notify that the Nepal Government using the authority given by Radio Communication (license) regulation, 2049, part 18 sub-part (c) has declared that use and storage of radio equipment in the ISM Band of 2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz with the Maximum Effective Isotropic Radiated Power of 4 Watts will not require any license..."
  • "Parliamentary Committee directs Nepal Government to let people freely use the WiFi (2.4 Ghz and 5.8 Ghz) Bands," by Mahabir Pun, Nepal Wireless Networking Project, 17 August 2006 (via PrismSpectrum): "After a two hours discussion at the Development Committee of the House of Representatives on Thursday [17 August], the committee has issued directives to Ministry of Information & Communications (MOIC) and Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) to de-license the Industrial, Scientific, and Medical (ISM) bands using 2.4 Ghz and 5.8 Ghz frequencies... Chairman Rai gave direct instructions to the Minister to publish the necessary directive [in?] the Gazzatte..."
  • The Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Communication told a ministerial conference in Bangkok in March 2004 that the Government plans to de-license the ISM bands "in line with WRC" 2003 recommendations. However, the 2004 update of the Government's Telecommunications Policy says that radio frequency use requires an individual license because it is a scarce resource.
  • "The Radio Communication (License) Regulation", number 2049 (1992), published in Nepal Gazette issue 2049.4.12 (27 July 1992 in English). Rule 18 deals with equipment designated as "License not required": broadcast receivers, radio control devices, cordless telephones, and such other devices as the Ministry of Communications may prescribe.
  • "Broadlink makes KTM wi-fi-enabled," The Himalayan Times, 31 October 2010: "Broadlink Network and Communications Pvt Ltd has launched [Wi-Fi based Internet access services] "from November 1 [2010] in Kathmandu, Butwal, Pokhara and Hetauda via 125 powerful antennas placed at strategic locations in the respective cities... 'They can be accessed with built-in wi-fi cards which are already a standard in laptops and mobile phones,' said Ravi Shankar Ghosh, head for business development... 'The Internet packages of Broadlink has been designed to suit the customers where they do not need a fixed speed or duration, by simply purchasing prepaid vouchers to access the service,' added Ghosh. Users have the liberty to increase or decrease the bandwidth speed as well as the duration of the Internet plan by logging onto the service website..."
  • "Wireless Broadband in Nepal - Current Policy and Status" by Kabindra Shrestha (Assistant Manager, Nepal Telecommunications Authority), presented at an ITU Regional Seminar on Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) for Rural and Remote Areas in the Asia-Pacific Region (Shenzhen, China) 1-2 September 2005: "New Telecommunications Act based on Telecom Policy [2004] is being drafted and will be enacted very soon... Government has allocated ISM frequencies for point to multipoint wireless internet services... No restriction on ISPs on mode of delivery of Internet... Spectrum fee is levied for each pair of frequencies used..." ISPs currently licensed but Telecom Policy 2004 provides for rural telecom providers with annual income of less than 2,000,000 Rs to be exempt from license and from annual fees.
  • "New internet product comes," Himalayan News Service in English, 15 May 2007: "WorldLink, known for pioneering new Internet products and user-friendly Internet services in Nepal, introduced a series of wireless Internet services in Kathmandu on Tuesday. The new services are targeted at users living beyond the main city area who do not have access to proper telephone lines... The services will be accessible from most places in the valley. “The only requirement is that there should be no blockage of vision from our towers,” said Shakya. The company has four towers installed across the valley... While the ISP is providing these services only in Kathmandu for now, it plans to introduce it in other major cities very soon." WorldLink's website does not indicate what frequency band the service uses, but the data rates are between 64kb/s and 256kb/s.
  • E-Network Research and Development - NGO in Kathmandu that promotes ISM-band wireless networking projects in Nepal.
  • Nepal Wireless Networking Project - Case Study and Evaluation Report by Mahabir Pun, Robin Shields, Rajendra Poudel and Philip Mucci for the World Bank (August 2006) in English.
  • "Because it's There: Putting Everest Online" (17 January 2003), and "After a Long Climb, Cyberchat on Everest" (23 April 2003) - both stories by Nancy Gohring published in the New York Times and archived on the Namche Chautari (Linking Everest) Project website: "Just as the climbing season was about to begin, Mr. Gyaltsen's Internet service partner in Katmandu, the Nepalese capital, suggested that he forget about completing the cybercafe this year because the Nepalese telecommunications authority would not grant the licenses needed. But Mr. Gyaltsen contacted another Internet service provider in Nepal, WorldLink, and met with success..."
  • Will Wi-Fi ruin Mount Everest?" by Jeff Greenwald, Mero Guff, 17 November 2010: "...During my most recent trek to Everest region in 2008, it was clear that the area was changing. Though the mountains looked the same, they felt less like a world apart... Cellphones were already in use between the main villages, and the isolating aspects of technology were taking hold. Sherpa guides and sinewy porters marched up the steep mountain grades with telltale white headphone cords snaking beneath their parka collars, lost in the private soundtracks of their MP3 files. Getting online was a different story. There were only a handful of cybercafes along the trekking route - the highest of which was at Everest Base Camp itself, at 17,500 feet - with Internet access via satellite. Connections were sluggish; it often took Gmail more than five minutes to load. Sitting in a cozy inn, immersed in conversation, was far more seductive than surfing the Web. The arrival of 3G will change all that... Wireless broadband, barely imaginable even 25 years ago, will change the way future travelers and locals interact in the world's highest mountains... But as the world races toward connectivity, travelers might stop to consider why we travel in the first place, and which connections we really want to make."
  • "Case Study: Wireless Internet in the Khumbu Region of the Nepalese Himalayas" by Dileep Agrawal, Managing Director, WorldLink Communications (autumn 2003).
  • "Wireless Networks Open Up Nepal" by by Jennifer Harsany, ABC News, 3 December 2003.
  • "Rural Access in Nepal using Wireless IP Technology" - powerpoint presentation by Binod Vaidya (Center for Information Technology, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu) at the First International Workshop on Networking Technologies, Bangkok, Thailand, 17 December 2003: he proposed a "Grid of Wi-Fi links between rural areas eventually connecting to the national infrastructure."
  • Nepal Wireless Networking Project
  • Interview in English with Mahabir Pun, founder of the Nepal Wireless Networking Project (July 2004).
  • Nepal Telecom Brief by Ken Zita, Network Dynamics Associates (April 2004).
  • "Yes, We Nepali are merely Players" by Dinesh Wagle, 4 March 2005 - this blogger believes that the royal government which came to power in February 2005 tightened control over wireless services to prevent Maoist rebels from using them for their operations.
  • "The muzzling of Nepalese radio" by Charles Haviland, BBC News, 22 April 2005.
  • The previous government already had rules in place requiring licenses for the import of most radio equipment. The following could not be imported without a license: radio transmitters and transceivers; FM and television transmitters; "wireless transceivers"; "Walkie talkies"; cordless telephones; "video senders"; amateur radio equipment; portable Inmarsat terminals and satellite handsets; satellite communications equipment (transmitters and receivers); radio paging systems (transmitters and receivers); cellular handsets and base stations; radio repeaters; radionavigation equipment; radar equipment; etc. See Traders' Manual for Least Developed Countries: NEPAL, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (30 December 2003), Part 2, page 13.

Asia & Pacific - Regional Overview