THE OFFICE of Utilities Regulations (OUR) has begun the process of acquiring an additional area code for Jamaica.
The regulation company said the introduction of the additional code becomes necessary as its projections show that new offerings are expected in the telecommunication market, which will result in an increased demand for additional resources.
The OUR said it is awaiting word from the North American Numbering Plan when the code will be issued to Jamaica.
In its 2011-2012 annual report, which was recently tabled in Parliament, the OUR advised that it was estimated that the current 876 code would be exhausted in the fourth quarter of 2012.
It said as a pre-emptive action, Jamaica applied for a new area code.
It was noted that the code would cover the same geographic area as the current 876.
reason for search
The OUR explained that with three players in the mobile market, it was projected that there would be a high demand for numbers and as such Jamaica would need to adjust its area code system.
The OUR said those plans had to be shifted after Digicel acquired the Claro network in 2011.
The company said since then, it has invited persons interested in setting up another mobile network in Jamaica to submit proposals.
According to the regulator, the interest has been positive. The OUR said it is now preparing the requisite industry consultation document for publication by early March.