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Afghanistan offers internet at 7-time higher rate compared to India

06 Aug 2020 Pajhwok Afghan News

 

KABUL

(Pajhwok): The internet price has been reduced in Afghanistan
from nine afghanis per one GB data to 6.5 afghanis, but the rate is still seven times higher as compared to India and 1.4 time compared to Pakistan
.

Telecommunications and Information Technology Ministry spokesman Hamid Poya told Pajhwok Afghan News that Afghanistan purchased the internet from Pakistan and Kazakhstan and then sold to telecom companies.

He said previously the telecom firms offered one GB data to customers for nine afghanis, but the rate had been reduced to 6.5 afghanis.

Poya said telecom companies had promised to further cut the internet price, but the promise remained unfulfilled. However, Afghan Wireless and Salaam network had somehow reduced the internet price.

“We are not happy with services offered by the telecom companies. They should offer internet at affordable and cheap rate,” he said, adding the government was ready to reduce the internet price if the telecom firms did so.

A number of telecom companies have been operating in Afghanistan and each offers the internet at different rate.

According to Pajhwok investigation, Etisalat offers one GB internet data for one month for 250 afghanis, Salaam network for 92 afghanis., Roshan offers one GB plus 200mb free for facebook for 250 afghanis, MTN offers 870mb for 299 afghanis and 21gb for 399 afghanis and Afghan Wireless offers one GB data for a week for 125 afghanis.

As compared to regional countries, the internet rate is high in Afghanistan. In Pakistan, the rate of one GB internet is equal to 22 afghanis and the same costs just 4.5 afghanis in India.

Comparing the prices, telecom companies offer internet to Afghans seven times higher than India and 1.4 time higher than Pakistan.

Hamid, an Afghan national living in Pakistan, said Zong telecom company offered 30GB internet for one month against 1500 Pakistani rupees (682 afghanis) Ufone offered six GB for 500 rupees, Jazz offered five GB data for 70 rupees.

A journalist in India, Sidharth Sibal, told Pajhwok that ARTEL offered 150GB internet for 799 Indian rupee (854 afghanis) and VODA phone offered 40GB internet for 399 and GIO offered 24GB for 149 rupees.

Wolas Ghorzan civil society

group leader Zia Wadan said the Afghanistan Telecommunications Regularity Authority (ATRA) had promised to reduce the internet price and improve its service, but it did not happen.

Telecommunications and Information Technology Ministry spokesman Hamid Poya said it was not their job to control the internet prices as it was the responsibility of ATRA.

ATRA spokesman Mohammad Saeed Shinwari said they held meetings with telecom firms a few days back and it was expected in near future that not only the prices would be reduced but the quality and service of internet would be improved.

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Original Link: https://www.pajhwok.com/en/2020/08/06/afghanistan-offers-internet-7-time-higher-rate-compared-india

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