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Committing to Consumer Friendly Regulation in Africa

Getting Regulation Right Blog Aspect
Dr Archana Gulati
Published Oct 26, 2013
Updated Sep 03, 2023
A news item about the  first conference of African telecoms regulators on consumer affairs in Lagos tells us that regulators from Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana etc. stressed upon protecting and promoting consumer interests.
The article states that the conference was attended by telecoms regulators from South Africa, Ghana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Cameroun, Liberia, Rwanda, Benin Republic, Malawi, Angola, Sudan, Uganda, among other African countries and [It acted ]as a platform to bring together, African telecoms regulators and subscribers, to discuss common regulatory interest that will further enhance telecoms growth across Africa…Major issues raised at the conference, were multiple taxation imposed by governments in the various African countries, as well as unsolicited promo text messages that hit the subscribers’ phones every minute.”
Interestingly the Ghana Regulator is quoted as follows,
“…good regulation promotes competition in the provision of electronic communications networks, services and associated facilities; contribute to the development of the internal market, the interests of consumers; apply objective, transparent, non-discriminatory and proportionate regulatory principles; and promote technological and service neutrality………
….too much regulations amounted to a “hidden tax,” because the costs of conforming to the regulations were passed on to the consumer in terms of higher costs. he explained that too many regulations might inject uncertainty into the marketplace, making it harder to raise capital and create new businesses.”
I could not agree more.