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MTN: Cell C will benefit from rate cuts

MTN says Icasa's new regulations are flawed, irrational and discriminatory.

MTN has taken Icasa to court over mobile termination rates. Picture: www.defenceweb.co.za.

JOHANNESBURG - MTN claims its competitor Cell C stands to receive at least R118 million every six months if new mobile termination rates are implemented as planned on 1 April.

MTN has told the Johannesburg High Court that the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa)'s new regulations are flawed, irrational and constitute a discriminatory regime.

The mobile giant, together with Vodacom, has taken the communications regulator to court in a bid to stop it from halving the fees companies charge each other to connect calls between their networks.

MTN has tabled its argument against the 2014 mobile termination rate,s saying they're unfair, miscalculated and will completely change the market structure.

MTN's legal representative, advocate Alfred Cockrell, says if the regulations are given the green light, the cellphone network will indirectly be subsidising smaller mobile companies such as Cell C.

He accused Icasa of failing to conduct proper consultation while drawing up the regulations and claims it used outdated data to reach what he called the new asymmetrical rates.

Icasa has set termination rates for 2014 at 20c per minute for bigger mobile companies while smaller cellphone firms will receive 44c per minute.

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