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NCC pegs local text messaging price at N4

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By Olubunmi Adeniyi

January 25, 2013: The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on Thursday announced a new price cap of N4 per message for all domestic off-net Short Messaging Service (SMS) across all networks. photo 17210 201003141

Under the regulatory intervention that goes into effect from February 5, 2013 SMS will no longer exceed the new price cap according to Josephine Amuwa, the Director, Legal and Regulatory Services in a statement.

Amuwa says that this had been communicated to the operators since January 3, 2013, adding that NCC would not place a price cap on international SMS.

“There was a general recognition that the cost of SMS is too high, especially in view of the interconnection rate of N1.02 for SMS as determined by the Commission in 2009.”

According to Amuwa, “in accordance with the powers conferred on the Commission under Sections 4 and Chapter V11 of the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA), 2003, the Commission hereby sets a price cap of N4 for Off-net SMS.”

NCC says that the new rate shall be implemented within 30 days from the date of the directive.

She also notes that operators had proposed a price cap ranging between N5 to N10 per message for Off-Net SMS.

NCC has no plan to set price caps for international SMS for now since international SMS interconnect rates were outside its control, the Nigerian telecoms regulator says.

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