Flourish of Pen Opens Door To Private Telecom Market
In a historic moment for Costa Rica, President Oscar Arias signed a law yesterday that will end the state’s 59-year-old monopoly on telecommunications services.
The measure will allow other national and foreign firms to join the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) in offering cell phone, Internet, radio and other telecom services here.
The law will go into effect after it is published in La Gaceta, the official government daily newspaper.
The first private telecom firm will likely open in two years, ICE President Pedro Pablo Quirós said Wednesday. An open market will be welcome to foreigners without residency, who are not allowed to own their own land or cell phone lines through ICE.
Competition will force ICE to improve its outdated services, Quirós said.
“We have 12,500 employees and 8,000 contractors,” he said. “We should not be running the company like a general store.”
The law puts Costa Rica in compliance with the most hotly contested part of the Central American Free-Trade Agreement with the United States (CAFTA), ratified by referendum in October.
Hundreds of thousands of people have taken to the streets in the past decade to protest an open telecom market.
You may be interested
Equipment failures causing missed approaches, cancellations at Costa Rica’s busiest airportAlejandro Zúñiga - September 17, 2019
Issues with the instrument landing system, coupled with the rainy season weather, have caused numerous missed approaches and flight cancellations…
New York at the center of the fight against climate changeIvan Couronne / AFP and The Tico Times - September 17, 2019
Environmental activists will meet in New York on Friday for a demonstration and a youth summit, with the goal of…
Keylor Navas vs. Real Madrid: A meeting worthy of ChampionsAlexis Hontang / AFP and The Tico Times - September 17, 2019
Costa Rica’s Keylor Navas has finally settled the debate regarding PSG’s goalkeeper. On Wednesday, the Tico faces his former club,…