AQLAAL is now recognised as a leading firm in the telecommunications and information technology sectors.
The sector is undergoing rapid transition requiring innovative and practical legal solutions. A key feature of our professional strengths is a long association with telecom sector clients leading to a deep appreciation of legal and regulatory sector specific issues.
AQLAALis amongst the first options considered by potential clients for work in these sectors. Some significant assignments are listed below.
● Led the project team for drafting of the “Electronic Transactions Ordinance, 2002”. The team was awarded the contract for the first piece of legislation for equivalence of electronic with paper-based communications and to jump-start recognition of electronic communications in commerce and government. The team comprised of lawyers and telecommunications engineers. Close examination of UNCITRAL Model Law and papers, legislative initiatives from various jurisdictions, public-private key infrastructure requirements, relevant domestic legislation requiring amendment and other relevant papers and materials.
The law has won international acclaim for being technology neutral and progressive
● Prepared Interconnection Disputes Resolution Regulations for the NRA
● Acted for a consortium of international and national solution vendors bidding for a national optic fiber transport and access network project
● Acted as Pakistan counsel for the operator for review and negotiation of Frame Supply Contract for acquisition and roll-out of a GSM network
● Counsel to the Electronic Government Directorate of the Government of Pakistan for E-Government projects – negotiations and drafting of contracts with vendors and solution providers
● Authored country report for a European Commission study on market access barriers in the telecom sector, for the EU market access data base. The study was commissioned for ten developing countries, including Pakistan
● Acted for purchaser of a locally incorporated foreign owned cellular telecommunications company. Matters dealt with included the applicable legal and regulatory regime on foreign investment in telecommunications sector, licensing issues, competition law regime and its application to the transaction, and the like. The transaction was completed successfully.
● Acted for the project company for contractual negotiations and finalisation of contract with PTCL for the first DSL project in Pakistan
● Legal Due Diligence in relation to Pakistan operations of an international cellular operator in connection with an international refinancing facility for the latter
● Advice and documentation on behalf of a major US based transport industry IT solution provider in connection with its presence in Pakistan in relation to a Facilities Management and Information Technology Support Agreement with the national flag carrier
● Documentation and advice for purchase of domestic V-SAT network by PTCL.
● Led the legal campaign for 16 ISP and one telecom equipment manufacturer challenging the principles applied by the NRA in relation to licensing fee
● Associate local counsel for the US$ 250 million foreign calls receivables securitisation transaction by PTCL.
● Regular representations and appearances before the telecom regulator on a diverse range of regulatory matters
● Generally, advising telecommunication industry clients in relation to various matters including projects, interconnection agreements, collocation, licensing issues, competition law in its application to transactions in the telecom sector, foreign direct investment, product launches, co-brandings, taxation issues, etc.
● Regulatory Advocacy and Advisory
The Firm advises extensively on regulatory compliance measures, show cause notices issues by the regulator, new service offerings and allied matters.
Consultation and comments on Quality of Service Regulation of GSM cellular networks
Represented Mobilink and China Mobile Pakistan Limited before the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority on Show-Cause Notices for Licensed QoS compliance
● Framework Contracts
The team at AQLAAL has acted for cellular, wireless broadband and fixed broadband companies in the negotiations and drafting of large and medium scale framework telecommunications and IT network procurement contracts, network roll-out contracts, software licensing and support services contracts. A significant feature of this area of work is integral involvement with the technical teams of clients for translating their system design and technical requirements into contractual terms.
Framework Contract between Motorola Inc and wi-tribe limited for procurement and roll-out of an approximately US$ 40 million WiMAX network
Framework Contract between Huawei Tech Investment Limited and wi-tribe limited for WiMAX network procurement
Frame Agreement between Alcatel and Nayatel Limited for supply of NGN FTTx network valued at approximately US$ 10 million
Framework Contract between ZTE and Paktel Limited (now CM Pak Limited) for procurement and roll-out of US$ 20 million GSM netwok
Framework Contract between wi-tribe Pakistan Limited and Satyam Mahindra for implementation of OSS and BSS in Pakistan, Philippines and Jordan
IRU contract valued at US$ 20 million between Wateen and CM Pak, for approximately 500 km of national optic fibre network
Cell Site Sharing agreement between CM Pak Limited and Pakcom Limited for 120 sites
The Firm has acted in numerous transactions and negotiated and drafted related contracts for a broad range of contractual arrangements pertaining to telecommunications and information technology sectors, including:
Value added services platform deployment and service delivery
Contract between Ericsson and China Mobile Pakistan Limited for Mobile Advertising Services