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Sri Lanka Opens Doors for Starlink, Allowing Elon Musk's Satellite Unit to Enter Telecoms Market

Sri Lanka's parliament has approved legislation that will allow Starlink to enter the telecoms sector. Three new licence types have been introduced for satellite internet service providers. Starlink gets preliminary permission following a fast-track process.

launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket

The new telecommunications bill, which is the first update to the old law in 28 years, was enacted without a vote, according to a statement from the parliament's office.

The amendments introduced by the bill will create three new types of licenses, enabling Starlink to enter Sri Lanka's telecoms market as a licensed service provider, subject to approval from the telecoms regulator. Kanaka Herath, the technology minister, informed the parliament that the original law did not have any provisions for satellite internet service providers to operate in the country.

While presenting the bill, Minister Herath emphasised that this opportunity is not exclusive to Starlink but is open to any company interested in investing in Sri Lanka. He stated, "Our plan it to grow the IT sector to a $15 billion industry by 2030. So it is important that we attract international companies to provide internet, especially to rural areas."

Starlink approached Sri Lanka in March with a request to start operations, and the country gave the corporation preliminary clearance in June after speeding the process. Minister Herath stated that Starlink will be forced to pay a price for the licence, but no specifics were provided.

  • Sri Lanka's parliament approves amendments to allow Starlink's entry into telecoms market

  • Three new types of licenses introduced for satellite internet service providers

  • Starlink granted preliminary approval after fast-tracking process


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