(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Muscat- Telecom operators in the sultanate will conduct online auctions of special mobile numbers (diamond and gold)on Monday.
The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) will oversee the implementation of the number allocation process by Omantel and Ooredoo through a bidding process on their websites. Mohammed al Kindi, executive manager of Regulatory and Compliance Unit, TRA said, 'Through this auction, TRA aims to ensure transparency in the allocation of special numbers to all the beneficiaries.
'The other objective is to limit the illegal trade in special numbers, noting that the revenue from such bidding will go to charitable organisations in the sultanate in accordance with the Telecommunications Regulatory Act.'
Kindi said that TRA has issued a regulation on the allocationof telecommunication numbers pursuant to decision (No 1/2018) that was published in the gazette. As per this decision, the allocation of diamond and gold numbers will be through auction in accordance with the procedures set forth in the decision.
Kindi said that chapter three of the regulation stipulates that the allocation and re-allocation of diamond and gold numbers will be through auction in accordance with specific procedures. These include: the licensees are obliged to conduct the bidding system at their own cost, bidding shall be in Omani rial, bidding shall take place upon request by the licensee and in accordance with TRA applicable rules and regulations.
TRA said that auction period can be extended at the request of the licensee. Bidding process will start at RO100 for diamond numbers and RO75 for gold numbers. 'Winner of the auction shall pay the amount duewithin three days. If the auction winner fails to pay the amount due, the following bid will be chosen provided that the bid's value is not less than 75 per cent of the first bid value. If the latter fails too, the third bid will be selected provided that it is not less than 75 per cent of the first bid value. Otherwise, the auction will be cancelled. Registrants shall be entitled to peruse the results of the auction and the licensee shall pay the bidding bill amount to TRA less the amounts accrued to the licensee,' the authority said.
Eng Babker Othman, manager of Technical Standards and Numbering Department at Regulatory and Compliance Unit, TRA, said, 'The role of TRA is to issue the regulation on the organisation of bidding and the provisions that apply for the bidding process. This is important to regulate the bidding and oversee the process that will be implemented by the telecom operators (Omantel and Ooredoo).'
Responding to social media enquiries on diamond and gold numbers bidding process, Eng Othman said, 'The diamond and gold numbers are the most popular among users. Silver numbers are not included in the auction and have a fixed price of RO50.'
As for the procedures set by TRA to prevent potential manipulation, he said that the value between the first and second bid shall not be less than 75 per cent.
Eng Othman said that TRA has issued a regulation to allocate special numbers through auctioning which ensures that the numbers reach the maximum number of interested users. 'We are confident that the auctioning system will ensure confidentiality of bidder data.'