“Recent moves to oppose new Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs) will delay reducing the cost of calls to the consumer, and are not in the public interest,” Telkom said in a statement on Friday, 21 February 2014.
Telkom went on to say that it is relieved that the initial delay to the implementation of Mobile Termination Rates will not be as long as originally anticipated and will be implemented on 1 April 2014.
According to Telkom, any delay to this implementation is to the detriment of consumers, who have in the past benefited from Telkom’s commitment to pass through savings derived from previous regulatory interventions.
Previous interventions have stimulated the industry to become more competitive as all players have moved to offer lower retail prices, Telkom said.
“Telkom always strives to carry through these savings to our customers,” Telkom Group CEO, Sipho Maseko was quoted as saying. “In the past four years Telkom has passed on significant savings to customers as a direct result of the lowering of MTRs.”
Maseko said that as it stands, Telkom Mobile still offers the lowest call rate of 29 cents [per minute] on its Sim-Sonke deal.
“This delay means that larger mobile operators will continue to enjoy favourable termination rates at Telkom’s expense especially if we consider that from 2001 to 2012 Telkom has subsidised these operators,” Maseko said.
“This has ultimately constrained our ability to offer even better retail prices to our consumers,” Maseko concluded.