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Leading the way in mobile market in SVG – LIME’s General Manager

Leading the way in mobile market in SVG – LIME’s General Manager

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Leslie Jack, the general manager of telecommunications provider LIME, says that his company’s chief competitor is taking advantage of the regulatory framework which dictates the Mobile Termination Rates (MTR) between the two companies.{{more}}

Jack, during a press conference on Tuesday, at LIME’s main office in Kingstown, disclosed that on June 14, after publicly stating his reservations, he reluctantly signed the latest MTR agreement with Digicel, and maintains that his rivals are not interested transferring savings to the local customers.

The Mobile Termination Rate refers to the fee which the networks charge each other when a customer from one network calls the other.

“Signing the agreement does not change our position on the Mobile Termination Rates here in St Vincent and the Grenadines,” Jack told the media.

“[Since] 2009 the Mobile Termination Rate was .2413 cents, now it is simply .24 cents; for me it is the same rate and it makes absolutely no sense.

“We believe that a 400 per cent MTR that is higher than what is being offered in the Caribbean… is totally ridiculous,” Jack added.

Jack said that consumers in other Caribbean countries are currently enjoying savings, which were mainly as a result of reduced MTR.

He pointed out that MTR in Jamaica was significantly reduced, and this has been to the benefit of consumers, and called on Digicel to stop what he referred to as “the cowardly act of using the regulatory framework as the shield to take advantage of the higher rates in market.

“…And I would want to think that Digicel manager (Sean Lattey), being a Jamaican himself, knows what’s happening in Jamaica, and knows the fact that Jamaicans in general… they are absolutely benefitting from lower rates in that country. Why can’t Vincentians benefit in the same manner?

“Here in St Vincent and the Grenadines we can be a lot more competitive, and Vincentians could benefit a lot more if mobile termination rates were lowered.”

Looking on the brighter side of things, Jack shared some “good news” with the media, informing them that the newly adjusted LIME rates have seen a number of persons switch, in order to take advantage of the 60 cents per minute across the board.

With two laundry baskets of cell phones on either side of him as he spoke, Jack said that over the period of Friday and Saturday, June 14 and 15, more than 700 Digicel handsets were traded in by customers.

He said that his company was not waiting for the MTR to be reduced, and that they were leading the way in the mobile market, with approximately 54 per cent of the current market share.

“Poor people of St Vincent and the Grenadines don’t have to wait on Digicel to save money; they can do so now by moving to the network that has the best rates by far in the market, 60 cents to call anywhere, any network, any time, local and Caribbean.

“We believe that at the end of the day, we need to offer our customers… the best rate in market, and of course, Digicel customers can become like LIME customers and take advantage….

“Gimmicks such as double bubble is a waste of time, given that the rate is still 98 cents, 89 cents, 86 cents and 75 cents, in comparison to Lime, which is 60 cents….” Jack said of Digicel.

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