Mobile operators baulk at proposed tax on SMS

10 Mar 2009

Ireland’s mobile phone industry has reacted angrily to the government’s proposal to levy a EUR0.01 tax on SMS text messages, the Irish Times reports. Although the tax could bring in EUR146 million (USD185 million) per annum for state coffers (based on four million subscribers sending an average of ten texts per day), the Irish Cellular Industry Association has questioned the motive driving the proposal and argues that end users already pay more than the EU average for voice calls and text messages. The association, which represents Vodafone Ireland, O2 Ireland, 3 Ireland and Meteor Mobile, argues that such a move would hit the young and low-income social groups who tend to use SMS more than other demographic groups.