The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has been warned by a group of operators that it must intervene in order to prevent the country’s mobile industry from collapsing.
The group is made up of self-professed second tier operators, and includes nTel, Smile Communications and Spectranet. At a meeting with NCC executive vice chairman Umar Danbatta the group warned that impending systemic failure at an industry-wide level could result in the demise of even tier one operators.
Business journal Leadership Nigeria notes that the operators are warning that wireless firms are having increasing difficulty in meeting their commitments to suppliers – such as network vendors and tower firms – as they are struggling to pay back loans.
Escalating operating costs and increased pressure for CAPEX investments are becoming difficult to justify in the face of stagnant revenue, argue the group. The operators have implored the NCC to introduce safeguards that will help all tiers of operator, including outlawing the “predatory pricing” strategies that have been adopted by certain major Nigerian operators.
The group’s determination to provoke a response from the NCC saw them warn that the failure of any one Nigerian operator would cause collateral damage to the country’s economy, as well as undermining the government’s pledges to increase connectivity.