Starlink plans to provide satellite internet in Nepal from this year

Kathmandu. Elon Musk’s company SpaceX has planned to expand Starlink internet service in Nepal as well. The company has mentioned on its website that internet service will start in Nepal from 2023.Starlink is currently available in more than 47 countries. Although SpaceX has brought a plan to expand its service in Nepal by 2023 on its website, it has not formally applied for a license with the regulator.

Purushottam Khanal, chairman of Nepal Telecommunication Authority, clarified that no official proposal has been made in this regard.
“We have not received a formal application yet,” he told Tekpana, “we are talking informally. We have replied that we can operate the Internet by taking a license according to the rules of Nepal. If they can work in accordance with our compliance, Starlink Internet can come.”He said that after receiving the application, further study will be done about Starlink internet and the conclusion will be made about whether or not to allow it to operate.

“We have said that we will do a study if you submit an application. But the formal application has not yet come. It may be their projection. We do not have a policy of not allowing Starlink to come to Nepal,” he added.He said that after the company has formally submitted the application, the technical aspects of it will be studied. He said that since Starlink will provide internet from ‘low orbit’, the decision will be made after confirming the technical things like how the spectrum is, whether it will affect the 4G or 5G service or not.

“Starlink has the option of operating the service in collaboration with any internet service provider or local vendor even without obtaining an operating permit from the Telecommunication Authority. However, approval must be taken for that,” said Chairman Khanal.On the other hand, there is also a provision that 20 percent of Nepalese shares should be owned by foreign companies to start business in Nepal. But SpaceX has not started the official process about this.

On the company’s website, it has been mentioned that internet service will be started in Bhutan along with Nepal in 2023. Similarly, it plans to start service in Bangladesh from 2024.In the neighboring country of India, the company has already applied for an operating permit. However, in China, it is not certain whether the company will expand the service or not.

Satellite internet is suitable for places where fiber internet does not reach. A router provides Internet access without using any wired hardware.Various banks, government and non-government organizations can expand their services by using this internet, especially in the remote villages in the Himalayas. The company sets different fees for internet and hardware according to different countries.

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