EghtesadOnline: A report says Internet tariffs have actually increased since 2013 and after President Hassan Rouhani took office, refuting earlier official reports to the contrary.
The Young Journalists Club website looked at prices across several Internet providers, both landline ADSL and mobile, and shows that prices are actually moving upwards.
Its investigative report follows comments by the director of the Telecommunications Infrastructure Company of Iran, Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, who said Internet tariffs have declined drastically.
Last month Jahromi announced the lower price per megabyte — according to him about 14,000 rials ($0.37) — during a ceremony held on March 11 on the occasion of the 140th anniversary of the establishment of the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (formerly the Postal Ministry), according to Financial Tribune.
“The base cost of transferring a gigabyte of data has fallen drastically and reached 14,000 rials ($0.37) from 36,000 rials ($0.97) in 2013,” he was quoted as saying. This is while the state-owned Telecommunication Company of Iran’s cheapest Internet service for transferring 12 GBs of data is 44,000 rials, which is 21 cents higher than when Rouhani took office.
Prior to Jahromi’s comments, the Communication Regulatory Authority (CRA) issued a mandate requiring Internet service providers (ISPs) to offer a 50% discount to subscribers using the new domestic national network. Again no significant change was seen by Internet users.
However, ISPs have not lowered their prices to end customers by the beginning of the new Iranian year.
The report by the YJC could well be presumptive as cost reductions may be coming later in the year.
The government has strived to boost the ICT sector through incentives and tax breaks to companies. Several new services have been launched like 3/4.5G mobile Internet and domestic ICT infrastructure has attracted investment from local and foreign firms.