MTN Cameroon’s proposed tariff plan for 2019 has been rejected by the Cameroon Telecommunications Regulatory Board (TRB).
The regulator rejected the operator’s technical offering and pricing conditions for access and sharing of network infrastructure because it reportedly did not respect certain proposals made by regulator’s board.
TRB had recommended that MTN Cameroon reduce the cost of interconnection for SMS and voice by 50%, eliminate validity periods for SMS bundles, reduce SMS tariffs by 30% as well as reduce the surcharge distribution key in favour of partners.
The regulator had also asked the company to define the maximum duration of an internet session and the period of disconnection, and to reduce the 40% activation fee. The network operators had been urged to remove fixed monthly fees which do not correspond to any service, validity duration of offers, amongst others.
Officials said following a review of the company’s interconnection catalogue, it was clear that most of the recommendations were not taken into account.
According to the regulator, in MTN Cameroon’s proposal, some fees were maintained while others were increased compared to 2018.
Ali Soungui, TRB’s Director of Licensing, Competition and Interconnection, said MTN Cameroon replicated its 2018 interconnection catalogue which levied call cost at FCFA 22 per minute during peak hours and FCFA 20 per minute during off peak hours, instead of FCFA 12 per minute as recommended by TRB.
“In the tariff structure of an operator, the interconnection tariff occupies an important place. If this tariff goes down, it means that the retail price will also be reduced by 45 percent. In other words, the cost per minute for subscribers will decrease,” Soungui explained.
MTN Cameroon has not publicly reacted to the latest development. However, a source within the company told ITWeb Africa that they will respond to the regulator “without making a big issue out of it.”