Local call charges (within a 60 km radius) will go up from KS6.50 to KS7.40 per three minutes for fixed line calls and from KS6 per minute to KS7 per minute for payphones. These new rates represent increases of 14 per cent and 16 per cent respectively.

However international tariffs will be reduced drastically depending on the time band and calling plans. Telkom Kenya’s Managing Director John Waweru explained that the tariff rebalancing is to eliminate cross-subsidies between international, long distance and local calls.

He said that trunk call tariffs including payphones (beyond a 60 km radius) will reduce from KS22.30 per minute to KS17.40 per minute, a reduction of 22 per cent. In future there will only be one instead of two bands of charging.

The one exception to reduced international rates is calls to Tanzania and Uganda that will increase from KS39 to KS45, an increase of 15%. Waweru pointed out that these increases were due to the interconnection agreements between the three countries.

Tariff reductions to other international destinations will fall by between 4.5% to 14.4%. Zone B which covers Europe and America the standard tariff will come down by 14.4%, whilst the economy tariff will come down by 14.5%.

This tariff rebalancing to eliminate cross-subsidies is beginning to happen across the continent as incumbent telcos begin to reflect the much lower international calling costs.

East African Standard