The proposed mobile termination rates were not effected on Sunday as earlier promised by the Communications Commission of Kenya citing board disagreements on the issue. MTR is the amount of money an operator pays other operators when its subscribers call the other network.
The CCK board did not approve the proposals tabled before it by the commissions acting director general Francis Wangusi and he says no explanation has been made for the same. The regulator had announced earlier plans to lower mobile termination rates (MTR) in July from the current Sh2.21 to Sh1.44 a minute but a meeting between the regulator, operators and the information ministry resolved to put the rate at Sh. 1.60.
The rate was arrived at as a compromise fee because Safaricom was calling for a high fee while the CCK and the other three operators were keen on Sh1.44. There have been calls from different stakeholders in the communication industry including Dr. Bitange Ndemo, the information Permanent Secretary and Safaricom, to have a new study conducted to establish the best rate to be applied
Wangusi said earlier that the CCK and operators agreed that should a new study be conducted putting a rate higher than the proposed Ksh. 1.60, the regulator will maintain the rate at Ksh. 1.60. Orange, Airtel and Yu Mobile have accused Safaricom before of using the MTR as a revenue scheme. Safaricom denied the allegation saying lower MTR will not enable the operator regain all the cost of ending calls as 6 out of 8 calls are terminated in the Safaricom network.
Lowering termination rates resulted to low tariffs in 2010 resulting to the lowest calling rates the country has ever experienced. However, all the operators had indicated earlier that they will not lower their tariffs even with the lower termination rates. Orange Mobile said the company plans to use the money as operation costs.