Domestic roaming charges in Russia are set to be scrapped in the first half of 2018, the Prime Business News Agency reports, citing comments from Nikolai Nikiforov, the Minister for Communications and Mass Media. The official observed: ‘At first, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) set the task of finishing the work in 2017. Our cooperation brought us to mutual understanding of the fact that doing it in 2017 is physically impossible … I believe that the issues of intra-network and national roaming will be most likely settled in 2018. It will mainly take place in the first or second quarters.’ The report adds that MegaFon will start cancelling intra-network roaming fees from this month.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, the FAS extended its deadline for mobile network operators to cease charging their users additional fees for roaming between regions of the Federation in August 2017. Having previously set a date of 15 August, the FAS issued a new ultimatum, ordering MegaFon, Beeline, MTS and Tele2 to scrap ‘on-net national roaming’ charges by 15 December 2017, although it now appears that this deadline has also fallen by the wayside.