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NTA (Nepal Telecommunication Authority), the telecom regulator of Nepal has started online registration of mobile phones. To stop illegal phones from operating and help people track their lost phones, they have started this registration online now. The IMEI registration would also help to discourage the grey phone market in the country.
Although it is already illegal to sell and promote grey phones in the market, there is still a huge market for such grey phones in Nepal. And it is also very easily available in the market, that the shops fell without any fear.
Now that the regulator has started this IMEI registration, they will make the illegal phones not operational to the mobile network in Nepal. It will take some time to stop those mobile phones from working with Nepali telecom operators. For now, NTA is using a manual workflow to handle the database system with that of telcos like Ntc, Ncell, Smart cell. But later, they will have a full-fledged system for the phone database system with the upcoming MDMS (Mobile Device Management System).
To launch or sell a phone officially requires registering IMEI in NTA. Million of phones have been registered till now in NTA. People can also register for their devices (brought from other countries). Now, NTA is going to stop the unregistered phones to work with Nepal’s Mobile network. The mobile phones, brought using official channels (the authorized ones), can only connect to the mobile network. This will be a big encouragement to all those firms, companies who sell their mobile officially. Ultimately, this will shut down the whole grey market.
If you are a mobile phone importer or individual, you can register your phone by going to NTA’s portal. Here are the steps to register IMEI phones online in Nepal.
You can even track or block your already registered phones through this portal.
NTA has already decided to make the IMEI registration mandatory, either through phone importers or individuals. IMEI is a unique identifier of a handset, which is used to identify a phone globally. It is also used by phone companies, telecom operators, government for several purposes. Customers also need to save this IMEI number which can be used to track the phone if lost/stolen. You can also find this IMEI number in the cover box of every phone.
Although NTA will start this process, it would not be possible if the telecom operators block those illegal phones from operating in their mobile network. So, this database that resides at NTA, should be synchronous with what the telecom operators have. Also, they should be able to block it as per the requirement or customers complain about stolen or lost phones.
As the phones are huge in number, they should do it through some automatic process instead of manual. This will happen with the MDMS project that NTA is working on now. The centralized EIR will maintain the database at NTA with the customer/Importer and also maintain control within the EIR of the operators. So, it will be advantageous to register, track, query, and block those phones through IMEI easily. Also Read. Registration of IMEI by EIR system and its advantages.
So, if you have a phone brought from abroad, you can register it in your own name. So, later if NTA does some sort of agreement with international regulator, then the NTA database can also blacklist those internationally blocked phones. This way, the contract phones or fake lost phones brought from other countries may not even work in Nepal at that time.
Tell us if you are able to register your phone IMEI at the NTA portal? Please put your comments for the upcoming MDMS system that will block grey phones from working in Nepal.