PTCL reduces bandwidth rates -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

PTCL reduces bandwidth rates

KARACHI, May 20 2006: The Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd (PTCL) has reduced international and domestic bandwidth rates, as a first ever services’ price reduction after privatisation, in a move believed to increase corporate subscribers. Sources in telecom said the PTCL’s board of directors, which met on May 19, reviewed this proposal.“As per new rates international bandwidth rates have been decreased to $1,600 per two megabits from $2,000,” said a source privy to the board’s meeting. “Similarly, prices of IPLC (international private leased circuit) have been reduced from $3,950 to $3,000 per two megabits.”

He said the main objective of the recent cut was to attract major stakeholders of call centres’ operations, which had so much potential in Pakistan.“Call centres have always been a source of attraction for foreign investors in South Asia,” said the source. “Therefore, several such centres are operating in India but Pakistan has not tasted such a windfall yet and the move may help attract call centre operators to expand business.”He said IPLC bandwidth was used for smooth data communications of telecom companies, call centres, technology firms and the organisations offering online services depended mainly on IPLC-based communication.

Earlier, in the meeting, new administration of the partly privatised PTCL accepted resignation of its President Junaid I Khan. May 09 (Friday’s) meeting was second of the newly constituted directors’ board of the PTCL. The new board was constituted last month, when the process of handing over of PTCL to Etisalat was completed. The new board comprises of nine members – five belongs to Etisalat and four from the government side.“The PTCL decision is not likely to affect its annual revenue,” said the source.

“The price cut in fact would increase the volume and attract larger number of corporate customers. It would also shine reputation of the new management.”He said the board also discussed various options to generate revenue and asked the business development arm of the company to explore international telecom services, offered by the global giants to increase profit base.“For that matter the board discussed WLL (wireless local loop) services and asked the officials concerned draw a comprehensive plan to increase subscriber base during 2006-07,” he added.He said the board also reviewed 2005-06 performance of the company during which the PTCL managed to attract two million WLL subscribers and similarly half a million fixed line telephony customers were registered during the last current financial year.

Profit after taxation of the PTCL declined 28.3 per cent during the first nine months of the current fiscal with decline in international calls revenue and higher operating cost compared with the corresponding period of previous financial year.The PTCL financial results reflected Rs15.28 billion earning during July 2005 to March 2006 as against Rs21.3 billion earned during July 2004 to March 2005.
Source: The News