Nigerian Networks May Hike Tariffs in Difficult Regions of the Country

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­Nigeria's mobile networks are considering raising their tariffs in parts of the country which have what they call an adverse business environment to cover their additional operating costs.

The suggestion was made by the chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators in Nigeria (ALTON), Engr. Gbenga Adebayo.

He also reiterated long running complaints about local government interference with the mobile networks towers and facilities.

Adebayo noted that "some of the state governments have taken laws into their hands and continued to close down telecommunication sites". He added that: the Association has "decided to, henceforth, not restore services in states that close down our sites without a court order."

Although the mobile networks have been criticized for the quality of the service they provide, they counter that local bureaucracy in securing planning permission and the inconsistent application of regulations is a bigger barrier to improving their networks.

"If that continues, as an industry, we will now decide to introduce discriminatory tariffs based on the revenue drive regime of the individual states." Adebayo  warned.

The mobile networks are currently petitioning the government to have their base stations declared part of the nations critical infrastructure so that it can be subject to national instead of regional regulations.

There are also problems with ongoing terrorism attacks on base stations in parts of Northern Nigeria and the Delta region.