The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has added about 14 crore IMEI numbers to the NOC Automation and IMEI Database (NAID) as part of its move to set up a National Equipment Identity Register (NEIR) system.
The commission on Wednesday signed an agreement with Synesis-Radisson-Computer World JV, an international soft solutions provider, to set up the NEIR system.
The deal was inked to acquire security provisions for mobile subscribers, increase government revenue and national security, and discourage sale or import and marketing of illegal and counterfeit mobile handsets.
In the presence of BTRC Chairman Md Zahurul Haque and Director General of Spectrum Brigadier General Md Shahidul Alam in the main conference room of the BTRC, Director of the commission's Wave Management Division Lt Col Md Faisal and Managing Director of Synesis IT Sohrab Ahmed Chowdhury signed the agreement on behalf of their respective organisations.
The IMEIs in NAID, the EIR of mobile operators and the central NEIR established at the BTRC will act as an integrated system.
The NEIR system will be directly connected to each mobile operator's own EIR. Customers' mobile phones will be automatically registered and used through the mobile networks. The system will make an immediate decision on access to mobile phones by verifying their validity.
Handsets imported from abroad are subject to verification of purchase receipts through NEIR's web portal and all phones that have come to the country as gifts will be activated (white-listed) in NEIR in light of the commission's decision, subject to verification and selection on the basis of sufficient evidence.
The guideline on operation of the EIR system was prepared on 11 February, 2020.
The BTRC chairman said at the event, "If the NEIR system is completed, the government will get additional revenues of around Tk4,000 crore every year."
He also hoped that other parties involved in the process would complete their work in time.
Brigadier General Shahidul said, "With the necessary and prompt cooperation of mobile operators in the relevant field, it will be possible to successfully deliver this service to the customer end."
In his inaugural address, Sanjeeb Kumar Singh, deputy director of Spectrum Division of the commission, detailed the activities of the regulatory body in bringing the NEIR technology.
Zakir Hossain Khan, deputy director of media branch of the commission, briefed the media on general consumers' involvement in the technology and what to do.
The process of supplying, installing and launching the operational hardware and software will be completed by March 2021, according to Synesis IT.
BTRC Vice-Chairman Subrata Roy Maitra, Commissioner Engr Md Muhiuddin Ahmed, the director general and directors of various departments of the commission, General Manager and Head of Business Tanvir Alam, and General Manager Md Aminul Bari were present at the ceremony among others.