The Chief Executive Officer of MTN Nigeria, Mr Ferdinand Moolman
yesterday appealed to the senate to consider the Data price floor as set
by the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, saying that data price
is among the lowest in the continent.
Moolman who made
presentations in Abuja, at the Senate hearing on
Data price floor,also noted that the inability of telecom operators to
access forex and that of the activities of the unlicensed providers of
“over-the-top” telecoms services, contribute to the dwindling fortunes
of licensed operators in the country.
He described the OTT operators as people “who do not have any
physical presence; nor pay any taxes; nor make any significant
contribution to employment or other socio-economic objectives of
government in Nigeria” According to him, “MTN is committed to continue
its efforts to provide the best data network to the people of Nigeria.
In this regard, however, there are a number of factors that impact
the sector’s sustainability such as the rise of headline inflation to
about 17.9% The depletion of operator revenues by unlicensed providers
of “over-the-top” telecoms services who do not have any physical
presence; nor pay any taxes; nor make any significant contribution to
employment or other socio-economic objectives of government in Nigeria
“There’s also the inability of operators to access foreign exchange.
This is particularly debilitating given that most of our inputs are
sourced off-shore. This has very significantly increased both operating
and capital expenses. “Despite these macro-economic challenges, telecom
tariffs have declined significantly to over 67% between 2007 and 2016
and data prices are amongst the lowest on the continent.
“With this in mind, MTN looks forward to the cost study as confirmed
by the NCC, and remains committed to working with the Regulator and
Industry to ensure fair value and fair competition in the Nigerian
Moolman added that MTN actively contributed to the development of the
National Broadband Plan, and has consistently taken every step to
facilitate the achievement of Government’s objectives of pervasive,
cost-effective and sustainable access to data services by all strata of
Nigeria’s population. The company continues to be an ICT development
partner to the government and people of Nigeria.
(Source: Financial Watch)