Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda have embarked on a project that will see mobile calls from and to within three countries charged at a uniform rate of US $ 0.10 from October 8 as part of the One Network Area.
The two other EAC members – Tanzania and Burundi – will adopt the new call charges from December 31 this year.
This move will see a slight reduction in the current rates charged for calls within the region, which are of course higher than those charged for calls to either Europe or US. At the moment, it costs Kenyans US $ 0.16 to call Burundi; US $ 0.12 to call Tanzania and US $ 0.09 to call Uganda.
Rwanda is the most expensive to call from Kenya at US $ 1 according to the current exchange rates.
Kenya’s ICT Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i said that during the recent Northern Corridor Integrated Infrastructure Summit, regional ministers agreed that the ‘one network area’ would commence on September 1.
“All the four ministers who were there worked on a Gazette Notice. At least the three of us – Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya – were required by law to publish guidelines for our industry regulators on how the ‘One Network Area’ will operate,” said Matiang’i while displaying the Gazette Notice dated September 1.
The Gazette Notice states that inter-operator tariffs for calling within the One Network area will initially be US $ 0.10 per minute for retail and US $ 0.07 for wholesale.