New Delhi: Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal on Thursday said nationwide Mobile Number Portability (MNP) is expected to be rolled out by February 2013, which will allow users to retain their numbers even if they move from one state to another. "For the timely implementation of the National Telecom Policy (NTP) 2012, the Department of Telecom has finalised broad agenda for next three months from December 2012 to February 2013," Sibal said at the 'India Telecom 2012'.
Some of the key initiative in course to be completed by February 2013 are approval of spectrum assignment and pricing, unified licences regime, M&A guidelines, finalisation of guidelines for spectrum sharing, creation of fund for R&D and manufacturing and of course, MNP on a nationwide basis, he added.
Currently, a user is allowed to switch to a different operator within his/her circle, while retaining his/her phone number. Under NTP 2012, the government had envisaged implementing MNP on a nationwide level allowing users to retain their mobile numbers even when they shift to a different telecom circle.
India has 22 telecom circles. According to TRAI, by the end of October 2012, about 75.14 million subscribers have submitted their requests to different service providers for porting their mobile number. In the month of September 2012, total number of subscribers who have submitted their request for MNP stood at 5.36 million.