Nigeria Communications Commission, NCC, last week directed telecom service providers to increase data subscription effective from December 1, 2016.
An NCC official who pleaded anonymity said the hike was in order to allow small operators and new entrants to acquire market share and operate profitably.
It was further learnt that the Federal Government took the decision having discovered that data rates are very low-priced in Nigeria, compared to other countries, including nearby African countries.
The government might have also taken the decision given that Nigerian subscribers have been kicking against the proposed nine per cent Communication Tax, whose bill is currently in the National Assembly.”
Meanwhile, in a letter to the mobile operators dated November 1, NCC said the interim floor price for data services was 0.90k/MB for the five big operators.
But it said the rate would subsist pending the finalisation of the study on the determination of cost based pricing for retail broadband and data services in the country.
“For the avoidance of doubt a small operator is one that has less than 7.5 percent market share and a new entrant is an operator that has operated less than three years in the market.
“All operators are to ensure that subscribers are not automatically migrated to pay-as-you-go platform.
“Also, note that effective date for the interim price floor is December 1, 2016.”
Yesterday, MTN sent messages to its customers stating that there would an increase in its data tariffs on December 1.
The message read: “Dear customer, please be informed that from December 1, some MTN data tariffs will be increased to reflect the new rates set by the NCC to operators. Thanks you”
Glo, Etisalat and Airtel sent similar messages to some of their customers.