Two GSM service providers are set to roll out offerings in Sierra Leone following regulatory approval. Cellcom, an Israeli mobile company, deployed the first phase of its national mobile network in Liberia in 2005. LapGreen Networks, owned by Libya Africa Investments Portfolio for Africa, is also set to start operations. The GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) operators have obtained the necessary regulatory approval, confirmed Bashir M. Kamara, Executive Secretary of NATCOM, the country’s regulatory body. “These two GSM operators have been registered and they have paid their license fees just like every other GSM service provider. They just need to roll out into the market,” Kamara told IDG News Service. Kamara believes the new operators will provide Sierra Leone with affordable services that help increase the nation’s mobile phone use, which is fewer than 1 million users. Maxwell H. Massaquoi, an expert in telecom business support and operation support systems, has a different view. “The advent of the two new GSM providers would probably not change anything,” he said. “They would either create a price war whose long-term benefit will be worse for an economy like Sierra Leone’s because the market will not be profitable for the operators, or join other operators in imposing incremental charges on the consumers.” Massaquoi suggested that operators share facilities to reduce operating costs and increase coverage, savings that could lead to cheaper price plans. “If operators share facilities … their costs of operations will definitely come down and this would reflect on their charges for users,” Massaquoi said.