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 with MDMS. 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. That means the phones will not attached to any 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, and Smart Cell. NTA has also made a soft launch of the MDMS (Mobile Device Management System) in Nepal from Bhadra 30, 2079. There was a delay to have a full-fledged MDMS for the phone database and make unregistered phones stop working. The reason firstly is COVID, then delay in required infrastructure/equipment and the latest stall from Prime Minister Prachanda.
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 from abroad, for personal purpose. Now, NTA will stop the unregistered phones to work with Nepal’s Mobile network from FY 2080/81 with MDMS. NTA announced to implement the MDMS from Jestha 2080. 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, and companies who sell their mobile officially. Ultimately, this will shut down the whole grey market.
Having worked with work permit for six months, you can bring in 2 phones with no charges. For which, you need to pre-register your phone before entering Nepal in the per-registration form inside NTA portal.
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How to register your mobile phone IMEI online in NTA?
If you want to register your phone’s IMEI online in Nepal, you need to follow the following steps.
- Visit the NTA portal.
- You need to go to individual registration (if you have all documents like passport, arrival stamp etc for phones brought from abroad) or grey registration (if you don’t have the official document but will pay for the registration valid till Ashar 2080).
- Let’s find more steps for the registration of phones that are allowed to bring in Nepal for personal purpose, with the Nepal Government’s OGL facility.
- Step 1: Enter the IMEI numbers, Brand, and Model of the phone to be registered, along with the info if it is being used. If the device is already registered, you will get prompt notification of the same and the registration is not required with further steps.
- Step 2: If the device is a new phone, then you need to proceed further where you have to verify using OTP via email address.
- Step 3: Then you need to enter the personal information of the applicant with the mobile number being used in Nepal, address detail (mentioned in the passport), along with the arrival date, and country.
- Step 4: Finally you need to confirm the information entered and upload the identification documents like passport, and immigration stamp while entering/departure Nepal. You also need to tick the declaration that the phone is genuine and used for personal purpose. If you can add all of the information successfully, you will get a confirmation via email.
- After receiving the online application via the portal, NTA will verify the documents and approve/disapprove the registration which will be notified via email. All the details need to be right and the scan copy of the passport, and stamps need to be clear to get the phone verified for MDMS registration.
Phone Registration for the Importer
As NTA has modified the online form for individual registration, the old portal is now being used for phone importers only. For the phone importers, you need to follow the steps.
- Visit the portal of NTA for phone importers.
- Press Sign up for the login or register.
- Click either New importer application.
- Now make an importer profile by entering the company name, address, email, contact person details, and company registration no, and attaching citizenship, company registration, PAN card, Mobile number
- Click New Register to put your phone’s IMEI with all the details like Brand name, mobile number, IMEI/ESN/MEID number, Name, address, and identification (Citizenship or ID card or passport).
- Click submit to go ahead with the registration and enter the phone IMEI in bulk.
You can even track or block your already registered phones through this portal.
NTA has already decided to make IMEI registration mandatory, either through phone importers or individuals. IMEI is a unique identifier of a handset to identify a phone globally. Phone companies, telecom operators, and government use the phone IMEI for several purposes. You also need to save this IMEI number to track the phone if lost/stolen. You can also find this IMEI number on your phone by dialing *#06#. Similarly, you can also find it on the cover box of your phone.
How to check your Phone IMEI registration online at NTA?
To check your phone IMEI whether is an official one or already registered at NTA, follow the steps below. NTA has now disabled the previously available “Know your device portal”. But you can use the same registration portal to check your phone registration information at NTA MDMS.
- Visit the NTA portal for individual phone registration.
- Enter your phone’s IMEI numbers, brand, Model, and currently used mobile number and submit.
- Then you will get the information on whether your phone is already registered in NTA MDMS. If not registered, you can go ahead with the registration process as mentioned above.
You can also check the phone’s IMEI registration info at NTA MDMS portal, where you just need to enter the IMEI of your phone and get the information. Likewise, you can also check the IMEI details before buying a new phone.
If your phone is a grey one that is operational in Nepal, Government has allowed a last chance to register it. For which, you need to pay some charges. Find the MDMS registration cost and process for grey phones in the NTA portal.
Telcos to co-operate NTA with this IMEI registration?
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 shall happen with the NTA’s MDMS project. 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.
As the full-fledged MDMS is still not implemented, NTA will ask the telcos to manually block those grey, unofficial phones in their network.
Advantages of IMEI registration
- Online registration makes mobile companies or authorized ones do it easily and without any hassle.
- Individuals can register for their phones easily.
- Individuals can also track or block their lost phones through IMEI, ESN, or MEID.
- Grey market phones will go down, which encourages more official brands and channels.
- Mobile payments will be secure with the identification database of each owner.
So, if you have a phone from abroad for personal purpose, you can register it in your own name. But, later if NTA does some sort of agreement with an 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 in the NTA portal. Please put your comments on the MDMS system that will block grey phones from working in Nepal.
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