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Batelco stops broadband ads after warning

By Agencies


Bahrain Telecommunications Co (Batelco) said on Thursday it will stop an advertisement campaign for broadband Internet services for which it had yet to receive regulatory approval.

"The advertisement was withdrawn," Ahmed Al Janahi, head of corporate affairs, said after the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) threatened legal action.

TRA said late on Wednesday it was "very concerned" by Batelco's advertising for "New Batelco Broadband Plus."

The advertisements say the services are "Coming Soon, subject to TRA approval" though TRA was still reviewing a Batelco application to provide the service, the authority had said.

TRA "will have to consider taking legal action" if Batelco did not withdraw the advertisements, it said.

The TRA was studying whether the tariffs for the broadband service, first proposed by Batelco in December, could hurt competition, it said.

Alan Horne, TRA general director, had said the advertisements seemed to be "an attempt to artificially create pressure upon TRA to approve this package ... It will not work."

Batelco and Kuwait's Mobile Telecommunications Co (Zain) operate the two mobile telephone networks in the 1-million-strong island state. Bahrain said last month it would sell a third mobile telephone licence this year to boost competition and help bring down prices. (Reuters)