Wednesday, 17 January, 2018

Mobile bills to become cheaper, TRAI slashes global incoming call termination rates

Trai cuts ISD incoming call termination rate to 30 paise International Incoming Call Termination Charges Cut
Sandra Phillips | 13 January, 2018, 09:29

After reducing IUC charges in India to 6 paise per minutes, TRAI may motion to cut worldwide termination charges to 25-30 paise per minute, a report by Money Control said. "The loss to Indian telecom service providers on account of the reduced ITC.is expected to be ₹2,000 crore annually, and this will lead to a loss in revenue to the exchequer, from both licence fee and GST", said Rajan S Mathews, Director General, COAI. In a background note on its decision to reduce the worldwide termination charge (ITC), Trai said the move will reduce the attractiveness of the grey route for carrying global incoming calls and the telecom operators' network would witness legitimate growth.

The termination charge is paid by an worldwide long distance operator, from whose network the call originated, to the Indian telecom operator on whose network it terminated. "The Indian telecom industry is passing through one of its toughest phases with severe financial stress, and has been seeking relief from the government". Back in February 2015, TRAI increased the ITC to 53 paise per minute from 40 paise per minute.

The change in ITR will make things worse for incumbents that are already reeling under the impact of reduction in local interconnect charges from last October 1, said analysts, echoing COAI's views that Trai's decision did not benefit customers and would instead benefit only foreign carriers at the expense of the domestic industry. They were, in fact, going to ask for an increase in the rates to Re 1, and then later to Rs 3.5 per minute, The Economic Times reported. TRAI had issued the consultation paper on Review of Interconnect Usage Charges in August 2016.As per the Telecommunication Interconnection Usage Charges (Fourteenth Amendment) Regulations, 2018, the telecom regulator notified that the termination charges have been reduced from 53 paise to 30 paise per minute.On the basis of the requests put forth by stakeholders in the open forum, the authority prescribed revised rates of termination charges.

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Telecom firms levy termination charge on operators from whose networks calls have been made for transmitting them to the subscriber.

Worldwide calls may become cheaper as the telecom regulator has cut global incoming call termination charges, according to an official statement released on Friday. An operator charges their rival an Interconnection Usage Charge when a user ends a domestic call on their network.

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