Airtime and Data charges go up, Phone Companies Blame Government for the Increase

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All mobile phone networks have announced that they are increasing their prices effective January 1st 2017.

Mobile internet service provider Vodafone has also joined the list of firms hiking their charges.

Both Airtel, ZAMTEL and MTN have announced their price adjustments today.

Airtel subscribers were hit with text messages this morning notifying them of the increment in air time charges.

All the firms are blaming the increase on Government’s decision to increase excise duty on airtime from 15% to 17.5% as announced in the 2017 national budget.

A statement from Vodafone said, “Effective 1st January 2017 Vodafone Zambia will adjust the subscription rates on bundles in all categories. The revision has been necessitated by the adjustment in excise duty on airtime from 15% to 17.5% as presented in the 2017 National Budget.”

Prices of almost all essential commodities in Zambia including water, transport, food and insurance fees have been hiked while electricity tariffs are set to go up in the first quarter of 2017.

Incidentally, the Central Statistical Office (CSO) on Thursday announced a sharp fall in the rate of the country’s annual inflation rate which has reverted tp single digit after peaking at 21.2 percent in February.

The surprise fall in the annual rate of inflation has given rise to skepticism over the manner in which the CSO computes its Consumer Price Index (CPI), the basis of its inflation figures.

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66 COMMENTS

  1. anther reminder why it better to live in Europe

    This is insanity in the third world country

    I feel sorry for Zambians

    Hello from Scotland- H New year

    I get 500 MBS imagine that 🙂

    Thanks

    BB2014

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    • Everyone in Zambia wished they lived in UK. Anything else is burlesque of a good life compared to the UK

      My phone is Free, data, broadband and landline I pay £50 a month, which is nothing considering I am on close £5,000 after tax. I am only 27

      Thanks

      BB2014

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    • We will lobby the Scottish Assembly that you get 1 TB ( by the way, terabyte) for the same rate because of your international duties. This will be done through a referendum in 2017 if there is disagreement in the Assembly. We will use your high profile on LT to support this just cause.

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    • “…I am on close to £5,000 after tax. I am only 27”
      In your dreams!!!
      I know you’re a comic and an attention seeker. To get that net per month, you need to be on a job that pays a minimum of £90,000 per annum. Not even a consultant in NHS gets that figure. Which company in Scotland would pay a 27-year-old that colossal figure? Maybe in Canary Wharf (The City).

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    • Mushota I don’t believe you are Zambian. You are a white racist dude. If you are african you are a low life self loathing I.Diot

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    • Daylight robbery and Zambians will take it as they do everything, with a bottle of Castle light!

      Meanwhile everywhere else in the world data is becoming free!

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    • In this technologically advancing world, access to technology needs to be dirt cheap. In this day and age, technology can change an entire nation. Something our president should have learnt through his galavanting trips around the world.

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  2. Comment: And when civil servants say that they need increments on there salaries because everything is going up next year………u insult them,what nonsense is this.were I’m staying,Water,electricity,bus fares,networks,commodities of goods and rentals have been increased………………ngatwalanda ati niba jerabo ba opposition

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    • According to PF all inflation indicators are in single digits….and droping….things are improving.

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    • If PF keep winning elections while they are strangling citizens with excessive taxation, then people have nobody to blame but themselves. All this is happening before the stolen Eurobonds have to be repaired. Economically Zambia will very soon be worse than Zimbabwe.

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  3. The cost of access to information has gone up! Good Knowledge is a product of good information. How shall our common people escape poverty without good and affordable access to information? You don’t improve the economy by increasing the cost of doing business! Learn from Trump the great!

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  4. It’s better to allow other competitors in the market. Look at what Dangote did to cement prices. We need more players there shouldn’t be a restriction to mobile service providers otherwise the government I shooting itself in the foot whilst punishing it’s citizens.anyone for boycotting these hikes by switching off our phones for a week?

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    • Internet data or connectivity providers do not have to be mobile communication companies. Look at iConnect, Coppernet, CEC Liquid, Hai etc. However, all these are gouging people by charging exorbitant rates for data bundles. Most of us spend more money on data bundles than on voice calls.

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  5. air time
    parking
    toll fees
    fuel
    tv levy yet to go up
    PAYE
    motor insurance
    electricity
    water
    all these have gone upin one year.

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  6. Just let the PF kaponyas play more music and the lungu will call for prayers then more music……

    Music pleas dununa rverseeeee yeeeeeee…..

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  7. Kudos, HH Techilema, terrible and 2020vision can we have a sing along pleas..

    Dununa rverseeeee yeeeeeee……

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  8. A song bafi.c.o.l.o.r please! dununa iyeee ayeee! by the time it will be March 2017 all the I.d.I.o.t.s who danced this song will have no energy to even mention the song.

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  9. Adjustment is long overdue …feel the pain after allowing thugs cling to power….next time vote using brains and not hearts.

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    • Please use your tribe to pay for your costs. Don’t complain. Just talk in Bemba and tell the suppliers that you are PF and you will get a big discount on all those costs that are going up tomorrow.

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  10. Lungu’s biggest influencer, CK is now on ‘the outside’ the man is now a headless chicken, which might even be drank, Katwishi nomba? With PF government in its current form, what was the point in the 2011 elections?

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  11. The next five years of Lungu will be sheer hell but Zambians seem to have the knack of taking it all in their stride without complaining. More money out their pockets.

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    • I really feel for my countrymen under Lazy Lungu as I sip strong excellent lager and chomp on a good Cuban cigar!!

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  12. Very sad indeed. Can the pf thugs now defend their useless government. You told us more money in our pockets. Why aren’t you dancing dununa reverse. When nez talks ati am hurt shani shani uko. Bane I talk because I feel the pain you are all going through. We are all suffering so please swallow that pride and let us come together and fight for change and better governance. I love you all. Have a happy new year. Nez live from my holiday home in Mauritius

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  13. so the price of living is going up but inflation is going down …..this is just foolness as for the mobile data prices we all know its a price-fixing cartel as Zambia has one of the highest data rates on the continent

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  14. the most abused resource is talk time in this country. am sure talk time gobbles more cash than beer and cigarettes combined. I have known some friends that can be on phone for 2 to 3 hrs daily. given an opportunity, I would charge talk time using electricity or water system. the more you speak, the the higher the charge per minute. for one reason or the other, I support the increase as this will minimize wastage and reduce unnecessary calls that have become the order of the day. every system has a negative as genuine and poor people will be affected but the benefits out weigh the negatives

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  15. @NEZ:voting for HH is never an option.yes you people in 3.5 provinces can team up and vote for upnd minus us in 6.5 provinces!!!PF is far much better than a tribal party upnd!!!no matter what,i and all my family members cannot vote for upnd under hh!!!prices world-over are nevet static!!!from 1st January,Prices for Fuel will go up in south africa.is it PF party which is ruling in south africa?grow up NEZ.even under upnd,prices cannot remain the same for whole 5 year period-NEVER!!!so cheat your grandma in tongaland(southern) NEZ!!!!

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    • @Njimbu: no one is talking about UPND here apart from you. No one cares who you vote for, it’s your personal choice.
      Your argument lacks merit. Even if fuel price in South Africa goes up, it will still be cheaper than in Zambia. More and more people will fail to afford electricity, fuel for their vehicles, communication, transport, toll gate charges etc. For those running businesses, profit margins will drop drastically because the cost of doing business in Zambia is high, while disposable cash has been affected in many households. Sounds negative but it is reality. All the best in 2017.

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  16. You asked for it by giving Lungu five years everything has gone up: TV levy K 30 from K 3, road tax gone up by 100% . You Zambians never learn so you have brought all this suffering upon yourselves so enjoyed it.

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  17. Haters. Just give Lungu a chance to work. By the end of this all you will be ashamed at where Zambia will be. Trouble with UPND chaps is that they can’t think beyond their tummies. Lungu is just cleaning up years of unsustainable subsidys. Please selenium awombeko Lungu.

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    • How is it MMD were able to increase reserves with subsidies…Mwanawasa was able to do that with copper prices low?

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    • Excellent point @Jay Jay…..These shallow minded PF cadres should realize that ECL’s government is broke.Bilateral support has dried up,no export revenue but government expenses ever high(Euro bond repayments,DC’s,Cadres etc).
      They are no looking everywhere for money…TV licenses,Toll gates.Soon ground/land rates will go up..We are in trouble..

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    • And who has been running or ruining the economy for 6 years? It is not as if PF won elections for the first time in 2016. All the crap we are seeing in the economy had been caused by PF since 2011. Subsidies have been removed twice. Eurobonds have been raised and stolen and powercuts are still there. Who is to blame? PF, PF, PF!

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    • @ john Chinena, where have you been sleeping for the past SIX YEARS??

      Our are you just so dull that you swallow all the lies that Lungu and his incompetent crew of ECONOMY WRECKERS put out to hide their pathetic ignorance, incompetence, corruption and theft?

      The EVIDENCE is there for anyone that has eyes and a functional brain to see.

      These criminals are just there to loot. Even if it destroys Zambia and leaves millions of Zambians in poverty.

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    • @ John Chinena your boma has looted the coffers! The removal of subsidies was done as part of a pre requisite by the IMF. Even the budget needs external funding, and even the Afdb are not lending to us. FDI is down 55%, Growth down 3% from a projected 7% 2 years ago.

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  18. No need to make silly noises over simple imwe ba UPNDonkeys. If you feel strongly about this, it is easy, you can stand up to the mobile service providers by simply reducing your airtime consumption (your talking and blogging) by half. You will still survive while the service providers will struggle to cope with reduced demand and be forced to respond positively in your favour. I tell you that these mobile service providers can easily absorb that 2.5% increase in excise duty. If you dont agree with my comment then YOU can easily absorb ka 2.5% increment and continue talking as ever.

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  19. It during economic downturns like these that we all learn that we can do things more efficiently and become less wasteful. Unfortunately it can be painful, but that reality checks come. Can we afford to drive to work everyday in separate cars me and my wife or can we use one car and save fuel by half? Can I afford all that talking on phone when I can communicate the same message with fewer words or when we meet? Can I reduce on my take of tu castle lite or must I continue at the same rate? What do I gain by boasting that twalinwa sana mailo? Do we really need to maintain that expensive car or can we do with a cheaper one? Can I do with cheaper suits and shies for the office or do I want to continue showing that ndi mukali? How about the number of girlfriends? Can I have a more economical…

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  20. Can I have a more economical bouqet for DSTV? Do we really need to keep all those lights on, all the cooker plates burning unnecessarily? In what areas can my family save on electricity? When we combine all the little savings how much better off am I and my country?

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    • Soon you will advising zambians how to eat grass, by the way what happened to the investor’s you were jumping up and down that we borrow more money for roads and the Investor’s are comming? Have heard of not one.

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  21. What we must realise and accept is that economic times are not good for the country and everybody else. It is immaterial whether we are PF or UPNDonkeys or UNIP or Fididi like Antonio, the fact is that our economy is driven by copper and none of us has any control over copper prices. Not even “economic manager”, don’t let him cheat you, he can be rich in Zambia but on global scale where copper prices are determined he is not even a visible tiny dot. This country is going through an economic adjustment which will be painful but good for everybody in the medium and long term. If we work together we can even achieve it in tge short term term. Even “economic manager” will find a better well structured and resilient economy and won’t require much painful work when he comes to power in…

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  22. Contd… Even “economic manager” will find a better well structured and resilient economy and won’t require much painful work when he comes to power in 2036, that is if he can start behaving himself now and inspire our confidence by then. And if it takes longer to succeed because of resistance and sabotage by UPNDonkeys, the donkeys should not cheat themselves that it gives them a chance to sneak into power, no Sirs, people know what and who they want and it is not GBM and his running mate the so called “economic manager”. Learn from 8/11, when UPNDonkeys thought that all the ingredients in the economy were right for a change of government. Well people have changed and more importantly they did not and do not think that “economic manager” is the right Noah for our economy. Of…

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    • Mr Terrible ,Mr Terrible

      How many from are you going to morph into first a chair leader of ” build roads, investor’s are comming ” then we saw the dununa reverse dance instructor now we are seeing the “tighten your belts” instructor ?. Come on make your mind up, people can’t keep up with your flip flopping…

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  23. There is no coherent and sound Fiscal,Monetary and Exchange Rate Policies in Zambia currently. With the economic downturn in Zambia the solution cannot be to expand the Tax base and increasing Tax Rates. The economy needs a stimulus package to promote growth and Revenue growth and collection.With declining real disposable incomes, diminishing returns will set in and ZRA will collect less Revenue. The govt should reduce total govt expenditures. Increasing Ministries will just exacerbate the problem. Zambia needs Economic and Financial Managers rather than Election Riggers and Criminals. 2017 promises to be a trying year for illegitimate Lungu.

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  24. lungu’s government is full of possessed. why force people to pay TV license? let lungu himself and PF pay TV license after all we watch from ZNBC are lungu’s teeth.

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  25. lungu’s government is full of possessed people, why force people to pay TV license? let lungu himself and PF pay TV license after all we watch from ZNBC are lungu’s teeth.

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  26. Ba CSO baf*kala up yours with your single digit inflation. just compare 2012 to 2016 even a kaponya from PF panga family will tell you things are higer. what statistics have you done ba CSO. political statistics

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  27. ChiAndyson banda says that it’s immoral for the civil servants to expect salary increment.Andyson banda you should be ashamed for your analytical reasoning.

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  28. We are good for nothing only talking about helpless things? Let’s suffer more may be helped to think by nature.

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    • Blogging is usually a pass time activity, you blog when your work is done, money is in the bank and the kids are fed.

      How can you expect people to blog when they spend their time looking out for price raises , as is the case in zambia ?

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  29. I wonder why people didn’t see it before voting. This was evidently there. And people said it can’t time for change. Catch up!!!

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  30. ZICTA as a government institution should not tolerate unilateral increase of mobile phones rates by network providers. The public has been overcharged for a long time without any recourse. Individual handsets been subjected to network providers marketing messages paid by top ups from the general public. ZICTA should adjudicate this move before any network provider can justify their increase. Zambians have tightened their belts in all aspects of their lives. Who will retrieve them?

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  31. Though am not affected by this, Lets dance dununa to that … its what you wanted. When data is supposed to be cheap in order to foster development in technology, with lungu ni dununa all the way

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