CRAN's 'type approvals' frustrate

09 January 2018 | Business

Meant to stem the importation of sub-standard telecommunications equipment into the country, a new regulation introduced last year by the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN) has caused delays for local electronics shops.

Importers, vendors and equipment manufacturers must obtain a 'type approval' certificate from CRAN, which upon receipt demonstrates that telecommunications equipment imported is of a set quality and standard. Namibian Sun paid a visit to two retailers this week to find out how the new regulation introduced by CRAN was affecting them. Nanodog staff said the regulation meant delays for consumers who ordered goods from them.

“It gives unnecessary delays for customers. We have to often explain to them why the products that they have purchased [take so long],” he said.

He also felt that the regulator did not adequately explain why it had introduced the new regulations.

“I do not think there was a decent explanation. It affects us as a business. There is a longer turn-around time for us to provide customers with their products,” he said.

An iStore employee who asked not to be named said the regulation did not affect them as they usually imported in bulk. This results in the iStore always having enough stock on hand, according to this employee.

“Our company is large and we have an appointed company that does the customs clearing for us. We are largely unaffected by the regulations. We also keep a lot of stock in our warehouses from where the products are imported from,” she said. She was of the opinion that smaller companies would have difficulties importing telecommunications equipment.

“For small companies there may be a delay in them getting their stock into their stores on time,” she said upon enquiry.

In a motivation released last year, CRAN said the regulation was introduced to prevent substandard equipment that may pose a risk to health and safety from being imported into Namibia.

CRAN also said the regulation was meant to ensure that telecommunications equipment entering Namibia was in conformance with the national frequency band plan and to protect customers from using products incompatible with local networks.



OGONE TLHAGE

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