Wired! Philippines

Paptelco wants metered calls

With the announcement of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) that it will give priority to metering, rural-based telephone companies want an option to apply the scheme to recoup costs.

Eric de la Cruz, president of the Philippine Association of Private Telephone Companies (Paptelco), said metering will enable the organization's members to recover the cost of installing telephone lines in the countryside.

Paptelco is the umbrella organization of some 48 private telephone companies throughout the country.

"It is a known fact that operations in the rural areas cost on the average of six times more than that of carriers in the urban areas," delos Reyes said.

He said metering would make local exchange operations viable and at the same time teach subscribers the proper use of using the telephone.

All local telephone companies have applied for metering as part of their rate re-balancing, a scheme which allows telephone companies to pass on to subscribers the costs of the declining profitability of international gateway facility (IGF) services through increased cost of local calls.

Among the local telephone operators, only Digital Telecommunications Philippines, Inc. (Digitel) and Pilipino Telephone Corp. (Piltel) have metered exchange.

Right now, the NTC is fast-tracking the review of the results of the hearings on the metering issue before coming up with a decision. (PNA)

Copyright Lynda B. Valencia [News quoted and sourced from the Philippine Cyberview mailing list]

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