tariffs Archives — LIRNEasia

As part of the “Inclusion in the Information Society” project commenced September last year we have been studying how electricity utilities can use the almost universal mobile devices to improve the services provided to consumers. The research is ongoing, but we have not let that stop us from making use of the policy windows that open up. Early this week, the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka announced that it would be accepting comments on a proposed tariff increase from the public. Based on our research, we plan to make submissions. Even before that, when a leading economic analysis program aired by Sirasa TV, asked us to speak on the subject, we gave a taste of what would be coming.
An article published in the Himal Southasian and authored by Rohan Samarajiva, explores the feasibility of regional economic integration among the SAARC region, given among factors, high telecommunication costs between such countries. Entitled, ‘Roaming dystopia’, the article opines that in the same way that poor transportation facilities can stifle international trade between countries, so can high communication costs such as leased line prices act as a deterrent to effective economic integration. Based on roaming tariffs collated and published in LIRNEasia’s International Voice Benchmarks report, the article states that “unless telephone calls within the region are cheaper than calls to locations outside, it is reasonable to dismiss declarations on economic integration as little more than hot air”. The full article is available here: Part 1 |┬áPart 2|┬áPart 3
The op-ed piece written up on the basis of one of the LIRNEasia benchmark studies, has been published in the leading Bangladesh newspaper, Daily Star. The data and recommendations thus have been published, in various forms, in the special issue of Himal Southasian, in The Dawn, as a Choices column on LBO, and also flashed by AFP. As a result of the latter, it has got play in a number of publications, including in a Vietnam publication, the Mirror online (Sri Lanka), etc. Telecompk.net has also started a discussion.