Cellular Operators Add New Charges To Subscribers

Majority of cellular companies will charge now additional taxes on reload of airtime or recharge of balance effective from July 1, 2011. Three out of five operators have announced that 1.0 to 1.5 percent additional amount will be deducted at the time of every reload of balance purchase by customers while the remaining two operators might also impose the new charges after passage of time.

If a customer recharges Rs 100 balance, he or she will have to pay 1.0 to 1.5 percent additional tax apart from the other taxes already being charged by the cellular operators. The operators are allowed to increase service charges without approval of Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) since the deregulation of telecom sector in 2003-04.

The cellular operators are trying to share the burden of increasing operational cost with their subscribers as the price war has eroded their revenues substantially, an official of a cellular company said.

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