KINGSTOWN, St Vincent – The National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (NTRC) along with Cable and Wireless SVG Ltd on May 17, 2022, signed the capital cost contract and the maintenance contract for the expansion of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) project.
After negotiations with Cable & Wireless, the NTRC agreed with the company for the capital costs of the project for $448,071.82 and $166,419.91 for the maintenance cost. The contract for maintenance is expected to last five years after the commissioning of the project.
The objective of the project is to expand the coverage of the GMDSS system which is in place in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). The GMDSS coverage is limited to the Mainland and Northern Grenadines as there is only one transmission site located at Mount St Andrews.
The addition of a new transmission site in Union Island which would be linked to the existing system using the newly installed Caribbean Regional Communications Infrastructure Program (CARCIP) Subsea fiber would greatly improve the GMDSS coverage, resulting in a safer environment for our fisherfolk, yachts, cruise ships and all other vessels transiting our sea space.
This project is facilitated by the Universal Service Fund (USF). The Universal Service Fund is a fund is utilised by the NTRC to compensate any telecommunication provider who is required to provide Universal Service or to promote Universal Service.
The revenue for this fund is contributed by all telecommunication providers in SVG, who are required to contribute a percentage of their annual revenue.