- In Hong Kong, carrier licences are issued for the provision of facility-based public telecommunications services and carrier licensees may be permitted to establish telecommunications circuits and networks across public street and unleased government land for provision of public telecommunications services. Carrier licensees may provide different types of telecommunications services according to their scope of services. Since August 2008, the unified carrier licence regime has been introduced as a single licensing vehicle for both fixed and mobile telecommunications services. Two previous types of carrier licences, namely fixed carrier licence ("FCL") and mobile carrier licence ("MCL") are no longer issued by the Communications Authority ("CA"). The existing FCLs and MCLs are effective until their expiry dates.
- "Fixed internal services" refer to the provision of telecommunications circuits and services for communications between two fixed points within Hong Kong. Typical examples include fixed telephone service, facsimile service, broadband Internet access service, public Wi-Fi service, value-added telecommunications services, and leased line service.
- "Fixed external services" refer to the provision of telecommunications circuits and services for communications between one fixed point in Hong Kong and one fixed point outside Hong Kong, or two fixed points outside Hong Kong but routed in transit via Hong Kong. Typical examples include International Direct Dial ("IDD") service, international calling card service, and international private leased circuit ("IPLC").
- "Mobile services" refer to the provision of public mobile radiocommunications services using radio frequencies assigned by the CA to enable two-way communications between moving locations or between a moving location and a fixed location in Hong Kong. At present, most mobile network operators (MNOs) are licensed under UCLs. Besides carrier licensees, Mobile Virtual Network Operators ("MVNOs") licensed under SBO Class 3 (MVNO) licences are also permitted to provide non-facility-based mobile services. Please see the MVNO licensees.
- "Other services" refer to fixed internal services for the transmission of television programme services and/or public wireless local area network services.
- Unified carrier licence ("UCL") is issued for provision of facility-based telecommunications services. Depending on the scope of services specified in the individual licensees, licensee may establish telecommunications networks, circuits, and equipment to provide fixed external services, fixed internal services, and / or mobile services. UCL has been implemented since August 2008 to replace the FCL and MCL.
- Fixed carrier licence ("FCL") was previously issued for the provision of fixed internal services and fixed external services. No new FCL will be further issued but existing licences are still valid until their expiry dates. The FCLs of some fixed network operators (FNOs) have been replaced by UCLs. Please choose both Unified Carrier Licence ("UCL") and Fixed Carrier Licence under "Licence type" if you are looking for FNOs.
- Mobile Carrier Licence ("MCL") was previously issued for the provision of mobile services. No new MCL will be further issued but existing licences are still valid until their expiry dates. Most MCLs of mobile network operators (MNOs) have been replaced by UCLs. Please choose Unified Carrier Licence ("UCL") under "Licence type" if you are looking for MNOs.
- Pursuant to the Communications Authority Ordinance (Cap 616), with effect from 1 April 2012, all duties and powers of the Telecommunications Authority (TA) are conferred on the Communications Authority (CA), and all duties and powers of the Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA) are conferred on the Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA), the executive arm of the CA. Unless the context otherwise requires, all references to TA and OFTA in the licences shall be construed as CA and OFCA respectively.