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Singapore and Malaysia reduce mobile roaming charges

Jack Loo | April 21, 2011
Price reductions of 30 per cent for voice calls and 50 per cent for SMS.

SINGAPORE, 21 APRIL 2011-Singapore and Malaysia mobile phone subscribers roaming between the two countries would see price reductions of up to 30 per cent for voice calls and 50 per cent for SMSes in May this year.

The announcement was made by the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).

Users would be able to enjoy the cheaper charges when they use the mobile roaming service provided by all mobile operators in Malaysia and Singapore. 

The price reductions will be implemented by mobile operators over two phases, for both prepaid and postpaid subscribers. Both the wholesale inter-operator charges and the retail subscriber charges will be reduced to drive the lowered prices.

This milestone follows a joint announcement made by Lui Tuck Yew, Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts, Singapore and H.E. Dato’ Sri Utama Dr. Rais Yatim, Minister of Information, Communications and Culture, Malaysia in June last year, that both countries were committed to exploring ways to reduce the prevailing roaming rates for mobile phone users.

“I applaud the commitment of our mobile operators to this endeavour, which will help promote greater communication linkages between our countries,” said Lui. He added that he hoped to see regulators on both sides “continue to identify new initiatives to enhance connectivity between Singapore and Malaysia."

”This is a significant effort for Malaysia and Singapore as it marks the close cooperation between our two countries. It is also the first bilateral cooperation to reduce roaming charges within ASEAN and paves the way for other similar efforts among ASEAN countries”, said Dato’ Sri Utama Dr. Rais Yatim.

The regulators IDA and MCMC have been studying the rates charged by mobile operators to better understand the prevailing industry practice and charging model. 

As mobile roaming charges involve different price components charged by operators from both countries, any study of and regulatory requirement to reduce roaming charges required coordination and cooperation between both regulators to ensure that users from both countries benefit from the decision.

With regards to the pricing of roaming data service, MMSes and video calls, both regulators are currently studying these charges and reviewing the appropriate actions.

 

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