Telecommunication subscribers in the country may be in for a rough year as the network operators are said to be considering another increase of their tariffs, in order to sustain services amidst what was described as a tough operating environment.
Sources within the industry told LEADERSHIP that the reason for the planned hike, according to the operators, was the increasing multiple taxation by governments at different levels.
Recall that the proposed data tariff floor, approved by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), was suspended last December, after a public outcry and intervention by the Senate.
In its reaction, the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) has expressed its dissatisfaction with the new development.
It made its position known in a statement by its chairman, Engr. Gbenga Adebayor.
This year, Nigerian telecom consumers may witness increase in their voice, data and broadband services from the mobile network operators.
Already, the planned introduction of a 9 percent Communications Service Tax (CST) by the federal government through the National Assembly to shore up 2017 budget revenues may be another trigger that would lead to the hike.
Engr. Adebayo said, “The tax bill, if enacted, will bring hardship to telecom subscribers. ALTON and some stakeholders, like the GSMA, Consumer Advocacy Foundation of Nigeria (CAFN) and NATCOMS have jointly spoken out that the bill is unacceptable to us.”