THE Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has released a new set of interconnection rates determination for voice services for the country’s telecommunications industry, commencing April 1, 2013.
The commission said it arrived at the new rate after comprehensive consultations with various stakeholders.
In a late-evening statement on behalf of the commission, the director of public affairs, Tony Ojobo, noted that the significantly downwards reviewed prices were informed by the depth of competition in the industry while taken into consideration the position of new entrants and small operators.
He said, “the Commission hereby determines that: The termination rates for voice services provided by new entrants and small operators in Nigeria, irrespective of the originating network shall be N6.40 (Six Naira Forty Kobo) from April 1, 2013; N5.20 (Five Naira Twenty Kobo) from April 1, 2014; and N3. 90 (Three Naira Ninety Kobo) from 1st April, 2015.
“The termination rates for voice services provided by other operators in Nigeria, irrespective of the originating network shall be N4.90 (Four Naira Ninety Kobo) from 1st of April, 2013; N4.40 (Four Naira Forty Kobo) from 1st of April, 2014; and N3.90 (Three Naira Ninety Kobo) from 1st of April 2015.
“This determination shall take effect from April 1, 2013, and remain valid and binding on licensees for the next three years until further reviewed by the Commission.
“New entrant is defined as newly licensed Operator entering an existing or new market within 0 to 3 years.
“Small operator is defined, for the purpose of the Determination, as an existing operator with a market share of 0 – 7.5 per cent in terms of subscriber base.
“The current interconnection rate regulation was implemented through the Commission’s Interconnection Rate Determination issued on December 21, 2009. Since then, the Nigerian Communications Market has seen tremendous growth in both, subscriber numbers as well as traffic volumes and available technologies (e.g. 3G). The current which is symmetric to all operators is N8.2.
“In June 2012, the Commission appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP to undertake a cost study for voice interconnection.
“In line with its commitment to a policy of openness, transparency, fairness, and participatory regulation, the commission informed stakeholders in July 2012 of its engagement of PWC to advise on the review of interconnection rates for mobile and fixed telephony services.”