Published: Sun, January 14, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

TRAI cuts ISD incoming call termination rate to 30p

TRAI cuts ISD incoming call termination rate to 30p

This comes on the back of excessive use of data driven apps that allow subscribers to make worldwide calls at a fraction of the cost of a voice call.

Indian telcos are expecting a loss of Rs 2000 crores annually owing to the reduction in International Termination Charge (ITC) from the existing 53 paise to 30 paise, a statement from Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) said on Friday.

"In view of the significant arbitrage opportunity between global termination charge and domestic rates, high level of worldwide termination charge will also give rise to growth of the grey market at the cost of national security and revenues of Indian operators", the telecom regulator said.

Whatsapp and FaceTime among other apps offer high quality voice and video calls.

The new rate will be effective from February 1.

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The current charges of global interconnect charges amount to 53 paise per minute.

The termination charge is paid by an worldwide long distance operator, from whose network the call originated, to the Indian telecom operator on whose network it terminated.

The move is expected to hit hard the top three telecom players - Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular - who are estimated to together generate revenues of about Rs 5,000 crore from incoming global calls. Earlier, TRAI cut interconnect usage charges (IUC) for mobile calls to 6 paise a minute from 14 paise.

Most of these global calls terminated on Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea's network.

The number of global calls made to India were comparatively lesser than those originating from the country.

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