Grameenphone has been asked to pay the sum within 2 weeks
Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has sent a letter to the country's leading telecom operator Grameenphone (GP) to payTk 12,579.95 crore in dues.
Of the total amount, GP owes Tk8,494.1 core to BTRC and Tk4,085.94 to the National Board of Revenue (NBR), said BTRC Chairman Jahurul Haque.
"Grameenphone has been asked to pay the sum within 10 to 15 days. The actual dues were Tk3,000 crore, but now its stands at a huge amount following the increase of interest," he said.
A letter in this regard has been served to the CEO of GP, he added.
When contacted, Sayed Talat Kamal, deputy director (external communications) of the operator, said: "We have received the letter on Tuesday afternoon."
Meanwhile, in response to the move by the government authorities, Grameenphone said: "It does not admit the demand and will now make a full assessment to determine the appropriate course of action."
In a statement issued, the operator said: "Despite numerous interactions with the Regulator and extending our full cooperation to the auditors, it is very unfortunate to note that the demand note does not reflect our concerns. Throughout the entire audit process we have pointed out the errors in the methodologies, procedure and substance of this audit exercise; however, our observations have gone unheeded. Grameenphone is a transparent company and adheres to the applicable laws of the land."
According to BTRC, the government has sent a letter to GP seeking payment of dues last year. In reply to the letter, GP asked for a revisit and full evaluation. After re-examination, BTRC sent another letter to GP, which also faced GP's objection.
Earlier on October 3, 2011, BTRC sent a letter to GP seeking payment of Tk3,034 crore dues, but the operator had raised a question about the government decision to conduct an audit with the country's audit farm. A bench of the High Court stayed audit activities following the petition of the mobile phone operator.
Later, the Supreme Court asked BTRC to maintain status quo on the notice for payment by Grameenphone.
Norwegian Telenor has a 55.8% share of Grameenphone, and Grameen Telecom Corporation holds 34.2%; the remaining 10% of the shares belong to retail and institutional investors.