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STD, ISD tariffs may fall further

May 12, 2008 18:57 IST
In a move that could bring down national and international telecom tariffs even further, telecom regulator TRAI on Monday sought views from industry and experts to liberalise Internet telephony segment.

As per existing licensing provisions, there is no restriction on international PC-to-PC calls through the Internet telephony. However, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are not permitted to have interconnection with Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN)/Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN) exchanges to provide Internet telephony within India.

Internet Service Providers are not allowed to make calls to fixed line and mobile subscribers as they are not permitted to have interconnection with  these networks to terminate Internet telephony calls within the country.

Allowing PSTN/PLMN connectivity to ISPs may provide a cheaper option to subscribers for making domestic and international long distance calls and may act as a catalyst in boosting the broadband penetration in the country. Not only this, Internet telephony within country may also boost competition in National Long distance sector, TRAI said.

Use of Internet telephony for calling PSTN/PLMN abroad has already generated competition in the International Long Distance (ILD) sector benefiting subscribers. Similar impact is expected in the National Long Distance (NLD) sector also.

However, this would require examination of certain regulatory issues like interconnection, numbering, lawful interception, emergency number dialing, Quality of Service (QoS), TRAI said.

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