The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) is expected to hand down a decision in respect of the End-User and Subscriber Charter today.
The authority has been reviewing the charter in respect of the rate at which data expires and how high out-of-bundle fees are.
Last year Icasa proposed that data expiry is extended to a minimum of three years. That would essentially mean that if you purchased data today and didn’t use it until 24th April 2021 you could still use it.
This proposal drew harsh criticism from network operators who told Icasa that they would have to lease equipment that might not be used for three years (Cell C said this), that end user choice would be adversely impacted (that was Vodacom) and that data packages might end up costing more (that’s from Telkom).
MTN meanwhile said that its balance sheet would be adversely affected and this would, in turn, lessen the amount of tax it would have to pay to Treasury.
Yes, MTN said that having to pay less tax was a bad thing. Technically speaking it is as it would mean less tax for the government to use but, come on, pull the other one.
Icasa will reveal its decision about the review of the charter later today at a press briefing and we’ll be sure to let you know what the authority says as soon as we know.[Image – CC 0 Pixabay]