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UAE: Landline portability a possibility this year


Five thousand subscribers opt to switch operators since MNP was introduced.

January 13, 2014 9:54 by

Portability of landline numbers could be available to UAE residents later this year, according to the country’s telecom watchdog.

The Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) has, after a five-year delay, introduced mobile number portability (MNP) to UAE residents, allowing them to switch seamlessly between telecom operators du and Etisalat without losing their mobile numbers. The authority revealed the feature would boost competition in an otherwise controlled duopoly.

The UAE was the last of GCC countries to introduce MNP to its residents.

The feature was introduced in the last week of December, prompting both telecom operators to kick-start nationwide marketing campaigns to attract potential consumers to switch to them. So far, more than 5,000 subscribers of both operators have expressed interest in making the switch, according to the TRA’s director-general, Mohammed Al Ghanim.

Considering the media attention that the introduction of this feature gained, along with several polls and surveys that indicated that the majority of residents would seriously consider the switch, 5,000 subscribers is an arguably small number.

However, when speaking to local media earlier this week, Al Ghanim said that we should wait at least for one year to judge the response and impact of MNP, as one week isn’t enough to analyse the response.


Have you expressed interest in making the switch, or do you plan on staying with your current telecom operator? Let us know through Facebook, Twitter or via the comments section below.

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