Econet - NetOne battle heats up
TELECOMS| Aug. 23, 2012, 1:43 p.m.
By Alfonce Mbizwo, Harare, Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s largest mobile network operator, Econet Wireless, says it will terminate mobile network interconnection services to the state owned rival, NetOne after the latter repudiated their interconnection agreement.
“NetOne has unequivocally repudiated its interconnection agreement with Econet. As a result of the repudiation, Econet…..will have no choice but to terminate all interconnection services it was providing to NetOne under the repudiated agreement,” said Econet in a statement flighted in the local press.
As a result of the termination, no calls will be made between the two networks.
Econet says it owed USDDD20 million (minus interest) by NetOne from as far back as 2009. Econet says it has in the past engaged Zimbabwe’s telecoms regulator, POTRAZ, and the parent ministry of Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development, and Ministry of Finance to intervene but to no avail.
NetOne, Econet says, had denied the existence of an interconnection agreement with itself, even though it continued to receive payments from Econet originating from the agreement.
From the communication, it said it was “obvious that NetOne was not prepared to honour its obligations” even as it was collecting the fees due to Econet from subscribers.
Econet says it is ready to reconnect once NetOne ‘makes a substantial payment towards the historical debt, and commits to meet future obligations on due date’.
NetOne has yet to respond, but Econet has complained, most recently to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications that it is owed USD 85 million in interconnection fees by the two state owned telecoms operators, TelOne and NetOne.
Econet is also paying tax on the uncollected revenue.
NetOne subscribers are likely to come off worse in the skirmish between the two service providers. Econet, with 7 million subscribers, commands 70% of the mobile market in Zimbabwe while NetOne has 1.6 million, the least among the three operators in the country.
MORE TELECOMS NEWS
MTN Ghana witnesses massive subscription through iFestMTN Ghana says it recorded close to 25,000 new data subscriptions through iFest last year, indicating that iFest has been very well received in Ghana. Read More
BotswanaPost and ZimPost in money transfer dealBotswanaPost and its counterpart in Zimbabwe, ZimPost, have announced the introduction of the first inter-postal money transfer corridor. Read More
MTN, Huawei trial 2.4T WDM systemMTN, Africa's largest telecommunications operator and Huawei today announced the successful live trial of a Transport Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and 2.4Tbit/s wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM) system. Read More
Tigo supports 19th Ghana journalist awardsMobile Network Operator Tigo Ghana has presented 10 tablets valued at GHC20,000 to the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) towards the annual Journalist Awards scheduled to take place at the Banquet Hall, State House, Accra. Read More
Africell DRC to launch 3G services end-2014Africell DRC is set to launch its 3G services at the end of the year, a source close to the company told Biztechafrica this week. Read More
The impact of Movitel on ICT in MozambiqueMovitel is reported to be contributing to changing the information communication landscape in Mozambique. Read More
SSA telecoms growing faster than any other regionThe African telecoms market is set to be one of the main growth success stories for the telecoms sector in the next 5 years, according to a new report. Read More
Tigo introduces unified short code for products and servicesTigo Ghana has announced the installation of a world-class IVR (Interactive Voice Response) that will give both its pre-paid and post-paid customers the opportunity to access all its product through a unified short code, 555. Read More
TNM to conduct biggest promotion pay-outTNM will on August 26 splash out over K100 million in its Ufulu@50 Promotion, the biggest payout in a single day in the history of promotions in Malawi. Read More
FEATURED STORYSafaricom-Equity battle for mobile banking hots up
Equity bank's entry to the mobile banking and telephony industry is still hanging in the balance with London-based global association of mobile operators (GSMA) calling for independent audit.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture
In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.