MNOs to begin selling phone lines through distributors under new franchise system
Mobile network operators will begin allowing distributors to sell new phone lines under a new franchising system as of next month or by 3Q2018 at the latest, sources said yesterday. The new system will allow each MNO to have between 100 and 200 licensed distributors in its first phase, and will not impose a cap on the number of lines distributors are allowed to sell. Customers will reportedly also be required to scan their fingerprints to purchase a new phone line. MNOs stopped selling new phone lines through distributors and cut them off from SIM cards and ways to wirelessly recharge phone lines at the end of April. The move came in accordance with a National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) decision to limit sales of new phone lines only to official branches of telecom companies starting from 1 March as a means to enforce know-your-customer regulations. There are no confirmations as of yet whether the plan has the blessing of the NTRA.