With effect from February 5th 2013, the Nigerian Communications Commission has directed that all domestic off-net Short Messaging Service (SMS) must not cost more than N4.00.
The new price cap is a 60 per cent reduction from the former price that was N10 per SMS for off-net and N5 per SMS for on-net text messages.
This directive was contained in a statement issued by the Head of Media and Public Relations, Reuben Muoka, and signed by the Director, Legal and Regulatory Services of NCC, Josephine Amuwa.
As reported by ThisDay, the NCC arrived at the new price cap after due considerations of the submissions made by the operators at various consultative meetings but will not place a price cap yet on International SMS.
“There was a general recognition that the cost of SMS is too high, especially in view of the interconnection rate of N1.02 for SMS as determined by the Commission in 2009. In accordance with the powers conferred on the Commission under Sections 4 and Chapter V11 of the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA), 2003, the Commission hereby sets a price cap of N4 for Off-net SMS,”Amuwa said.
Off-net SMS are text messages sent from one network to another network, while on-net SMS are text messages sent by a subscriber to another subscriber on the same network.
The directive has been communicated to the operators since January 3, 2013 and will take effect from February 5, 2013.