Call rates to Pakistan from all other countries has been increased from 300 to 800 percent due to implementation of ICH (International Clearing House) Charges.
Call Rates Increased For Overseas Pakistanis
Increase is about 300 to 800, varies according to the country and network from where they are calling. Since Oct 01 2012.the decision was made by the PTA and backed by ministry of information technology.
Previously call rate to Pakistan was 10-10.5 cent per minute, but now it has bee increased up to 10 to 12 cent per minute.
According to different estimates mentioned in express tribune, 7 million Pakistanis living board and monthly traffics of international calls coming to Pakistan is round about 1.5 billion minutes per month. If we analysis the statistics mentioned in READER telecom reviews , per month international call traffic to Pakistan is 1.5 billion minutes they have to pay more US $120 million to $150 million extra to PTA so that they can call their beloved one in Pakistan.
Why Call Rates Increased?
According to government officials, ICH has been adopted to eliminate gray or illegal call traffic to Pakistan. ICH (International Clearing House) will streamline all the incoming international calls through PTCL maintained Central Gateway and all LDI Operators will share revenue based on their market share. Monthly inbound call volume to Pakistan is about 1.5 billion minutes. According to Critics and Analysts, government will collect an additional 120 to 150 million US Dollars per month through increased call rates. In short reason was to reduce illegal calls to Pakistan.
From government perspective overseas is not that much contributing towards the economy so this is the way to add their contribution but somehow this way is harsh because according Google Pakistan ranks amongst the top countries with remittance positional topping US $20 billion a year. But overseas still going to call or they were going switch to viber and Skype or any other cheap alternative.
Role of CCP?
COMPETION COMMISION OF PAKISTAN challenged PTA decision of ICH.CCP has issued policy note for implementation of ICH which is illegal somehow not competitive in result cause monopoly of PTCL and LDI operators will not going to struggle to increase the sales of incoming calls.
HOW OT AFFECT?
Keeping in view of this policy :
- That the economic activity will suffer as overseas companies will be discouraged to do business with Pakistan. it will become very expensive in comparison to the neighboring countries.
- International companies have expressed their concerns regarding these proposed changes and the impact on their businesses in Pakistan. These companies are requesting the Ministry of Information Technology and the PTA to consider delaying any implementation until the trade implications under General Agreement on Trade and Services (GATS)]
- It will affect the overseas that are considered as backbone of Pakistan. Overseas Pakistanis sent foreign exchange worth billions of dollars each year increased call rates has dishearted them as now they can make only short duration calls to their family in Pakistan.