There are now 6 international submarine cable systems connecting Pakistan, including SMW3, SMW4, SMW5, IMEWE, AAE-1 and TW1. Additionally, Orient Express and PEACE cable systems are under construction.
Pakistan Telecommunications Limited Company (PTCL) is the national telecommunication company in Pakistan and an incumbent telecommunications operator in Pakistan. PTCL is the landing party in Pakistan for SMW3, SMW4, AAE-1 and IMEWE cable systems, operates cable landing stations in Karachi. SMW3, SMW4 and IMEWE land at Hawksbay beach, while AAE-1 lands at Clifton beach close to Captain Farhan Ali Shaheed Park.
Transworld Associates Private Limited (Transworld, or TWA) privately owns the TW1 cable system and is a member of the SMW5 consortium. Both TW1 and SMW5 land at Hawksbay beach and terminate at Transworld's cable landing station in Karachi.
Wi-Tribe LDI Pakistan is building the Orient Express submarine cable system, to be landed in Karachi and Gwadar.
Cyber Internet Services Private Ltd. (Cybernet) is the landing party in Pakistan for the PEACE cable system, to be landed in Karachi and Gwadar.
According to the Pakistan Telecommunication (Re-organization) Act, 1996 (Act), the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) is a body corporate to regulate the establishment, operation and maintenance of telecommunication systems and the provision of telecommunication services in Pakistan, in additon to other functions.
Accroding to the Act, no person shall establish, maintain or operate any telecommunication system or provide any telecommunication service unless he has obtained a licence under this Act.
Currently there are three (3) types of licenses in fixed-line services, including Long Distance and International (LDI), Fixed Local Loop (FLL) and Wireless Local Loop (WLL).
LDI license authorizes the licensee to establish LDI (Long Distance and International) network facilities, and to offer LDI services, anywhere in Pakistan. LDI service covers the provision of end to end communication between points that are located in different regions, not in the same Local Calling Area, or located more than 25/35 Km apart and located in Pakistan with other end located outside Pakistan.
In addition, Telecom Infrastructure Providers (TIP) license authorizes the licensee to establish and maintain the infrastructure facilities (Earth Stations, Optic Fiber Cable (OFC), Radio Communication links, Towers, Poles etc.) in Pakistan to lease, rent out or sell end to end links to telecom operators licensed by PTA.