Context, Issues and Solution towards 5G Network Migration of Nepal (CISNetMiN)



Research Motivation 

We, the research team members include professionals of networking and telecommunications as well as university professors. Our main motto is to have localized ICT research for our country that contributes towards speedy implementation of new technologies in the field of information and communication technology for social transformation. At the different time frame, we members were involved in the context of Nepal’s ICT development via several research and development. It was also the major concern of Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) to formulate suitable policies and regulatory guidelines to establish quality and reliable communications infrastructure for Nepal, for which NTA’s initiation in country-wide broadband network deployment via MiDHill optical fiber project, district optical fiber project and subsidize operators for broadband deployment is the appreciable initiation. The important part for our country is the concern of network migration costs e.g. legacy to SDN, IPv4 to IPv6 addressing, 3/4G to 5G network etc. for internet and telecom service providers as well as network operation & maintenance and upgrade as well. With the rapid growth of smart users, IoT implementation and the Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) deployment becomes major concern for the service providers as their sustainable business solutions. Considering the global pace of technology transformations, we need to take steps for our country’s network to identify its current status and apply suitable measures towards future smart life. Hence, we consider telecom network migration issues for Nepal and possible solutions/approach towards 5G network migration. 



After the liberalization of information, communication technology (ICT) / Telecom policy, there has been significant improvement in the ICT field, which has remarkable impacts on different sectors of Nepal due to the creation of a favorable and competitive environment of ICT in Nepal. Considering the demographics and geographic distribution of Nepal, infrastructure deployment and technology implementation is a challenging issue. The proper technology choice as a part of business strategies towards sufficient return on investment is utmost important for service providers. Human civilization has constantly progressed amidst the modern technological breakthroughs by winning against the forces of resistance to change. Since the mobile technology’s birth and widespread adoption, this technology has developed from GSM to 3G, 4G, and now 5G technologies with faster data rates and better service potentials. The purpose of this study is to show how the bulk of the mobile telecom traffic is starting to migrate towards internet and IP based services, and the choice of alternative paths is widening as new technologies from different backgrounds are emerging. This research also aims to compare some approaches to find out suggestions for the most feasible technology selections for Nepal.


Justification of the Study 

Financial sustainability of the ISPs and Telecom service provides is becoming a major challenge while migrating from legacy systems such as IPv4, 3G and others to IPv6, 5G and others. This is a major concern due to the backward compatibility issues with the latest generation of networking paradigm such as IPv6 and software defined networking (SDN). While network infrastructural challenges are many, devices must be benchmarked on whether they can be upgraded or need replacement is a major concern from the consumer’s perspective as well. Thus, the bargaining power of supplier is limited, and consumers might vote with their wallet for not migrating to future technologies and solutions. This has created a vacuum and technology chasm in the ICT industry.

We need to have a full architectural view not only the core network perspective. While global research is still emerging, from the Nepalese perspective, research in understanding the need and applicability of each mobile evolution path are still in its infant stage. Though the techno-economics related perspective to assess the technology options is not new, such a practice in managerial and policy level decision making has not become pervasive. 

With the advancement in modern computing world, the existing business organizations, network and telecom service providers have to be well adapted with the change in the technologies. Especially the internet/telecom service providers of the developing countries like Nepal feels challenges to migrate their current service network infrastructure into the next generation network technologies basically to 5th Generation (5G) Mobile Communication and its associated networking paradigm e.g. IPv6 addressing and Software-Defined Networking due to limited cost, lack of trained human resources and lack of proper planning.

While the techno-economics literature up to 3G mobile technology evolutions could be traced, the modern phase of evolution is still under development in academic discourse as well. In the context of Nepal, it provides ample opportunities to expand the techno-economics models beyond its narrow decision-making perspectives at the firm level to the macro level understanding to spectrum pricing and regulation as well. 

Hence, this research performs the techno-economic evaluation of 5G network migration in line with SDN and IPv6 migration considering World’s migration scenario and recommend the solution in the context of Nepal. 



The major objective of this study is to understand mobile evolution paths in Nepal from techno-economic perspectives, the objective(s) are:

  • To study on the mobile and broadband coverage status of Nepal.
  • To evaluate the suitability of related mobile technologies from the network coverage and capacity perspectives by understanding demographics (Dense, Urban, Suburban, and Rural).
  • To provide solutions for intelligent and cost-effective transformations of existing 3/4G networks into 5G networks considering the context of Nepal.


Reserach Duration: 3 Years (2022-2025) 


Principle Investigator: Dr. Babu R. Dawadi


Dr. Krishna Raj Bhandari, Unviersity of Helsinki, Finland
Lok Nath Regmi, Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus, Tribhuvan University
Binod Sapkota, Institute of Engineering, Thapathali Campus, Tribhuvan University and 
Rupesh Shah, Institute of Engineering, Paschimanchal Campus, Tribhuvan University 


Research Advisor(s): Prof. Dr. Shashidhar R. Joshi, Prof. Dr. Danda B. Rawat


PhD Research Scholar(s): Nabaraj Khatiwada, Binod Sapkota 


M.Sc. Students: Thesis Students


This research is Funded by University Grants Commission Nepal (UGC-Nepal) with grant support USD20,000 under Collaborative Research Grants ID: CRG-078/079-Engg-01