South Africa's second network operator (SNO), Neotel has welcomed ICASA's publication of the draft call termination regulations that propose further interconnection rate reductions.
In a statement, the company says it has always been of the view that the regulation of interconnection and its associated pricing is best dealt with by the telecommunication industry's independent regulator, and commended ICASA for taking action in this regard.
It also welcomed the acknowledgement by the Regulator of the company’s status as a new entrant, to be contrasted with long-established operators. Neotel will, however, submit its detailed comments and views on the proposals in the regulations during the public enquiry process, it says.
“We certainly support the principle of cost-based termination, as well as the blending of peak and off-peak termination rates into a single rate, which will result in greater flexibility in retail pricing for operators," says Dr Angus Hay, executive head of technology at Neotel. "However, we will seek clarity on the pricing of competitive long distance carriage of fixed-line calls, which has not been dealt with in the regulations, but which is an important aspect of fixed-line interconnection.
“As all the competitive issues within the telecommunications industry begin to be addressed and regulated properly, we believe that a fair competitive landscape will begin to form and consumers will truly benefit in the end," Hay adds. "Neotel’s focus is on making communications more affordable to South Africans – bringing high quality products and services to the market, and providing real value at the best rate.”