The Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) says local operators are now able to pay their licence fees in instalments to help them cope with the country’s ongoing financial crisis. A report from NewsDay cites POTRAZ director general Gift Machengete as saying: ‘We have a statutory instrument that allows us to negotiate with them, to look at their financials and see whether it is true that they cannot pay upfront. We then look at what they can pay and we negotiate, then they can pay in instalments.’
Of the three active cellcos, only privately-owned Econet Wireless has paid its full licence fee, with state-backed firms NetOne and Telecel expected to benefit from the change in legislation. Telecel had previously negotiated an instalment plan with POTRAZ but the government warned the regulator that it had no authority to set up a payment scheme until legislation was amended.