Ghana and Ivory Coast are the first two countries to have implemented the ECOWAS directive on mobile roaming. They also pledged to inspire other members of the community to do the same. Ghana has already signed a memorandum of understanding with Togo to this effect.
The Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications and Posts of Togo (ARCEP Togo) and its Beninese counterpart (ARCEP Benin) wish to set up free roaming between the two border countries. To this end, a bilateral memorandum of understanding was signed between the two parties on Wednesday October 18. Its implementation is scheduled for January 1, 2024 .
The initiative will allow nationals of one of the two countries traveling in the territory of the other to keep their telephone numbers and benefit from local pricing conditions. The agreement takes into account voice services, SMS in roaming situations and mobile Internet. It also includes the reduction of international communications rates between the two countries.
The initiative complies with Regulation No. C/REG.21/12/17 relating to roaming on public mobile communications networks within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) which was born in Praia, Cape Verde, in October 2017. Last July, Ghana and Ivory Coast became the first two countries in the community to implement the said regulation. Ghana and Togo have also initiated discussions with a view to implementing community roaming.
Once implemented, this memorandum of understanding should make it possible to facilitate communications between Togo and Benin, in particular thanks to the reduction of costs. This should also accelerate ECOWAS’s ambition to establish seamless roaming between its member states as part of its vision of making telecommunications a tool for economic integration.