Botswana Fibre Network (BOFINET) says it has come up with strategies to make the wholesale internet tariffs as competitive as the regional and international ones.
The wholesale internet reductions are said to be enjoyed by the licensed service providers that BOFINET supplies.
BOFINET Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mabua Mabua, on Monday said that the organization has managed to decrease input costs for international wholesale internet. He added that recognising BOFINET’s mandate and the relationships with the wholesale customers, they are immediately passing the benefit to them by reducing the wholesale internet tariffs.
The BOFINET CEO also implored the licensed service providers to also as much as possible pass the reduction of wholesale tariffs benefit to the end customer. Mabua pointed out that it would help make Botswana competitive, so the country can be removed from the list that have high internet tariffs.
“We are in this together and therefore we need to work hard together as we catch up with the rest of the world,” said Mabua.
He pointed out that when launching BOFINET last year, they entered the market with wholesale internet tariffs that were between 30 percent to 59 percent, lower than the average market rates then.
He added that the tariffs that are being launched are between 40 percent to 70 percent below the ones launched last year.
He revealed that into the future, 2014/15, they are planning to expand their 6,000km long national fibre backbone by approximately another 1,000km assisted by the government introducing fibre in routes such as Sekoma,Tsabong, Sehithwa, Mohembo and Maun, Ngoma and Kasane.
“In this same year we will also be starting to roll-out fibre to the business in Gaborone, Francistown, Kasane and Maun and later to all major urban and sub-urban areas to enhance broadband connectivity,” said Mabua.
He pointed out that despite the huge investment in undersea and national infrastructure tariffs or pricing for the internet have not been as competitive to match the level of investment.
He added that this has directly affected the speed and size of bandwidth that the user or consumer can afford.
BOFINET Strategy and Business Development Manager, Ludo Mogegeh said that the main objective is to align BOFINET IPT and (International Leased Private Circuits (ILPC) pricing to internationally competitive pricing.
She added that aim is also to pass the benefit to BOFINET customers and encourage a trickledown effect on to the end user market
“We want to provide point to point connectivity to the international network, providing raw bandwidth for global communications networks. This development enables organizations to communicate between geographically dispersed areas,” said Mogegeh.
She explained that there is now more than a 70 percent reduction on International Leased Private Circuits (ILPC) prices, as well as more than 65 percent reduction on IPT prices. Mogegeh also pointed out that price per meg on IPLC have reduced to P1200 and also price per Meg on IPT have dropped to P1000.