Mmegi Online :: Inside the billion pula tariff war
Banners
Banners
Banners
Banners
Last Updated
Thursday 13 December 2018, 12:33 pm.
Banners
Inside the billion pula tariff war

In dismissing the application last week, Justice Dambe concurred that Mascom Wireless failed to demonstrate the urgency part of their case and promised to give full reasons today.
By Bame Piet Fri 09 Jun 2017, 16:15 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Inside the billion pula tariff war








The mobile phone service provider had approached the court seeking an interim interdict to halt the implementation of BOCRA’s directive and a subsequent ruling that were implemented on Thursday last week. Mascom Wireless argues that the reduction in tariffs was not done in good faith and that there are prospects of success in having the March directive reviewed or set aside by the court. In the court papers, Mascom argues that:

“The approved prepaid tariffs are the maximum prices that shall be charged for any prepaid call service offered by Mascom. Mascom shall ensure that all existing packages are revised accordingly and charged within the set ceiling. The approved postpaid prices are the maximum prices that shall be charged for any postpaid call package offered by Mascom for consumer, business and other packages. All existing postpaid packages shall have prices charged within the set ceiling”.

The attorneys for Mascom, Desai Law Group further argue that the tariffs filed by their client for the first off-net tariff are for the standard prepaid tariffs, and for the standard business postpaid tariffs.  They argue that Mascom and other operators – Orange Botswana and beMobile – offer a number of different plans and profiles to both prepaid and postpaid subscribers. “These plans and profiles offer different value positions depending on the subscribers’ preference and needs (for example usage levels,inclusive minutes/data in bundles/plans, and handset value subsidy). 

Different tariffs and different value proportions are a natural party of any competitive retail mobile market, including Botswana,” the papers stated. They stated that BOCRA has in the past, and as recent as March 2016 approved specific Flexicall tariffs and approved other specific tariffs for both prepaid profiles and postpaid plans.

They argue that the March 2017 directive to all operators to remove the Off Net premium for all Off Net mobile voice calls by June 1, 2017, was unfair and ambiguous. They say it is evident that the directive focuses on and is limited to decreasing and ultimately removing the price differential between on-net and off-net voice call tariffs. 

“There is no mentioning in the directive, or in previous communications from BOCRA

Banners

and/or the consultant in relation to the project ‘Development of Cost Model and Pricing Framework for ICT services in Botswana’ that the filed tariffs shall be the ceiling prices for all plans and packages”. 

They argue that such requirement would be going beyond the requirements in the directive and that there are serious problems with BOCRA’s intended intervention. Mascom argues that at the time of filing the submission its standard prepaid tariffs (flexicall) were substantially lower than Orange’s standard prepaid tariffs.

“Why would a responsible and competition-focused regulatory body ex-ante intervene in a market and require that one operator’s prices are capped at a much lower level than a competitor’s?” They contend that BOCRA’s intervention, which was enforced last Thursday was unlawful in that it is not catered for in the directive and not supported by any form of consultation or findings. 

“Furthermore, the intervention is not supported by the Communications Regulatory Authority Act (Cap 72:03, in particular Section 6(2), which provides BOCRA should take decisions in an open, transparent, accountable, proportional and objective manner”. Although the directive was enforced last week, Mascom stated that there was need for amendments of all profiles and plans on the network platform and stated that the late communication of new requirements, which were submitted on May 26, 2017, were impossible to comply with.

In one of their correspondence, Mascom Wireless on May 5, 2017 accused BOCRA of failing to follow due process and in breach of the Communication Regulatory Act. “It is altogether shocking that BOCRA states that ‘while in pursuit of being a model regulator by following best practice regulatory conduct’, ‘we reserve the right to manage consultation with the regulated authorities.’” 

They argued that BOCRA has the obligation to comply with the Act and manage consultation in adherence with the Act.  Mascom also questions BOCRA’s reduction of Mobile Termination Rates in a three-year period (2016-2018) that will end up in a 13 thebe reduction by next year. 

They said this has serious implications on the direction of retail price revisions, but BOCRA has not made a substantive explanation despite many contradictions in its correspondence

 

Subscribe to our Newsletter
Banners
Banners
Banners


Features
Fri 09 Jun 2017, 16:45 pm
Fri 09 Jun 2017, 16:21 pm
Fri 09 Jun 2017, 16:15 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:47 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:41 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:35 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:32 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:30 pm
Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:25 pm
Fri 26 May 2017, 15:33 pm
Fri 26 May 2017, 15:30 pm
Fri 26 May 2017, 15:23 pm
Fri 26 May 2017, 15:21 pm
Fri 19 May 2017, 12:09 pm
Fri 19 May 2017, 12:05 pm
Fri 19 May 2017, 12:05 pm
Fri 19 May 2017, 12:04 pm
Fri 19 May 2017, 11:58 am
Wed 17 May 2017, 08:53 am
Fri 12 May 2017, 12:26 pm
Fri 12 May 2017, 12:11 pm
Fri 12 May 2017, 12:09 pm
Fri 12 May 2017, 12:08 pm
Fri 12 May 2017, 12:07 pm
Fri 05 May 2017, 14:59 pm
Banners
Banners
Subscribe to our Newsletter
have a story? Send us a Tip
Banners
  • Previous
    Next
    Masa Centre
    ::: Thursday 13 Dec - Thursday 13 Dec :::
  • Previous
    Next
    Riverwalk
    ::: Thursday 13 Dec - Thursday 13 Dec :::
  • Previous
    Next
    Gamecity
    ::: Thursday 13 Dec - Thursday 13 Dec :::
Selefu
Masisi, Khama
Banners
Banners
resim yükle