Pakistan slashes mobile phone call rates
ISLAMABAD – Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA) has reduced the Mobile Termination Rate (MTR) from Rs. 0.70 per minute to Rs. 0.50 per minute from 1st January 2022, a move that will decrease the rate of off-net calls.
Rates shall be further reduced to Rs. 0.40 per minute from 1st July, 2022. Reduction in the MTR has been made after thorough consultation with the telecom industry, the authority said in a statement.
PTA is of the view that lowering of MTR would allow more competitive and innovative offerings such as free minute off-net bundles for the consumers. It is expected to make the market healthier and beneficial in terms of lower tariffs for making off-net calls. It would also benefit smaller operators in terms of reduced net payments to be made to the bigger operators.
In July 2021, PTA issued a consultation paper wherein it was observed that current MTR of Rs.0.70 per minute in Pakistan is still higher than the benchmarking results of the MTR determination of 2018 and the MTRs prevailing in regional countries. Further, PTA had also received requests from telecom operators to review the existing mobile termination rates.
Majority of the responses received, supported PTA’s recommendation to lower MTR. However, there were opposing responses too. After industry hearing and thorough analysis, PTA has determined the MTR for all types of calls (i.e. local, long distance and international incoming calls) terminated on mobile networks from other mobile networks or fixed networks in Pakistan and AJ&K/GB, to be Rs.0.50 per minute from January to June 2022, Rs.0.40 per minute from July 2022 to June 2023 and Rs. 0.30 per minute from July 2023 onwards.
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