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Carriage charges on STD calls halved by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India

The Economic Times :  February 25, 2015

New Delhi: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on Tuesday slashed by close to half the carriage charge that telecom operators need to pay providers of long-distance telephony for carrying STD calls.

The regulator has put a 35 paise per minute ceiling on the charge, irrespective of the distance of the call. Until now, the limit was 65 paise, depending on the distance.

While on an average it costs 21 paise to carry long-distance calls, for remote areas the cost went up to 31 paise, and factoring in a 10% mark-up, the final rate was set at 35 paise, Trai said, explaining its decision.

"It was observed that there is a large variation i.e., some NLDOs (national long-distance operators) offer carriage charges as low as 9 paise per minute while a few others charge at the ceiling rate, which was 65 paise per minute," the order issued by the telecom regulator said.

Rajan Mathews, directorgeneral of the Cellular Operators Association of India, said the move was something the industry had itself sought from the regulator, and that it won't have any major impact on telecom operators.

The regulator will review these charges in 2017-18 as present networks are transforming into Internet-based networks which is expected change the carriage cost structure.

Trai had on Monday removed termination charge on calls made from landlines and reduced mobile termination fees by about 30% to 14 paise a minute, a move which could make calls cheaper.

Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and IBEF is not responsible for any errors in the same.

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