Afghanistan’s Ministry of Telecommunication announced a reduction of data prices by the Afghan Telecom and Salaam, state-owned telecom companies.
According to the Ministry of Telecommunications, Afghan Telecom has reduced its data prices by 30% and Salaam, another state-owned telecom has reduced its internet data package prices by 20%.
This comes as the telecom and internet users have been regularly complaining of a high internet price in Afghanistan.
A year ago, a campaign naming ‘#WhereIsATRA’ started by some youths against low telecom service quality and high internet prices.
Mirwais Arya, one of the key members of the ‘#WhereIsATRA’ campaign who has closely monitored the telecom operations in Afghanistan told Khaama Press that the Ministry of Telecommunication which is the wholesale provider of the internet data is ready to provide internet to the private companies at a lower rate, but the private companies are in a tight collusion with each other trying not to lower the data prices.
The main issue with the state-owned Salaam telecom company is its low technical capabilities and inability to provide the same service quality as the private companies that will of course not lead to a market competion.Mirwais Arya told Khaama Press.
Mohammad Fahim Hashimi, the Minister of Telecommunications had early said that the telecom companies buy a one-gigabit internet for less than AFN 10.00, but resell at AFN 180.00 which is 18 times higher than the original price.
Despite the high internet data price in Afghanistan, the quality of the service is way lower compared to the neighboring countries.
The data speed in Pakistan and India, the two close neighbors of Afghanistan are much higher and the price is way low compared to Afghanistan.