Kenya is spearheading talks so that African telecom operators can cut roaming charges for cheaper cross-border call rates, Business Daily reports.
This would mean cheaper cross-border call rates for Mobile phone users in Kenya and other African countries if the push for regional telecom operators to cut roaming charges becomes successful.
Since 2017, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa), Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas), Southern African Development Community (SADC), and the East African Community (EAC) are working on mechanisms that will see up to 40 African countries harmonize roaming charges across the board.
According to ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru, mobile phone users would pay reduced tariffs for calling a different network in a neighboring country as part of an initiative to boost integration and modernization seeking to scrap roaming charges.
“We want a situation where data charges are the same through Africa continental free trade area creating a market of 1.4 billion people to compete globally,” Mr. Mucheru said.
By 2030, Smart Africa, an alliance of over 37 heads of state and government plans to develop a digital single market on the African continent.
Africa has one of the highest roaming fees in the world. For instance, a Nigerian roaming in Europe pays five times less than they would while roaming within the Ecowas.