Vodafone-Idea on IUC charges announced by Reliance Jio

Hours later Reliance Jio declared to charge an Interconnect Usage Charge (IUC) from customers who make calls outside the Jio network, many people and telecom networks splurged with riveting statements. Vodafone Idea Limited assured not to burden customers with the task of identifying whether the call they have been making is on net or off-net each time they decide to do so.

The telecom network also stated that all their subscription plans for prepaid and postpaid users on both the networks of Vodafone and Idea need not segregate between calls made within the Vodafone Idea network or to other networks.

These statements came running after Jio levied a charge of 6 paise per minute on its subscribers to cover the IUC.

What does Vodafone Idea say?

“The announcement by one of the telecom service providers today to charge for calls made to other service providers to cover the termination charge of IUC is not only an action of undue haste but it also does not bring out the fact that interconnect is a settlement between operators and not a consumer pricing matter. In our view, its TRAI’s call for a consultation on IUC keeping in mind the continuing asymmetry in traffic and in line with its earlier stated position on the matter,” said Vodafone Idea in a statement.  

The network also mentioned that this firm step was taken by Reliance Jio to recover the IUC money was done in haste and it diverted major part of attention from sector’s poor health.

Bharti Airtel and Kumar Mangalan Birla

The growing network with its lush connecting services endorsed the step taken by stating that any step to reduce IUC would add to the financial burden of the sector while Mr Birla alleged that Jio’s decision has been following the right path after reducing the outgoing ring time which would definitely pinch incumbents.

What is IUC?

The Interconnect user charges (IUC) is basically a charge paid to the telecom on which network the call terminates. This has lately been the spine of agreement amongst the private owners and sector regulators. The sector regulator, however, had brought the IUC down from 14 paise per minute to 6 paise per minute since 2 years. Now the decision has come in place to scrap off the charges from Jan 2020 onwards which also led to litigation between the regulators and incumbents since any reduction in the IUC would lead to a major loss in revenue generation for the telecom services. 

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