Prices Of Fixed Broadband To Drop By 25% By Year-end
Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo confirmed that prices of fixed broadband will drop by at least 25% by year end.
This is in line with the Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto.
This anticipated reduction is due to the Mandatory Standard on Access Pricing (MSAP) which came into force on June 8, 2018, but the implementation was backdated to January 1, said Gobind.
“The relevant parties are currently in commercial discussions to finalise the wholesale prices. The process is scheduled to be concluded in July or August, after which new, lower price broadband packages are expected to be rolled out to consumers,” he added.
The ceiling wholesale prices that can be charged by service providers are set by MSAP, hence lowering the wholesale prices should translate to lower retail prices for consumers, said Gobind.
The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) had done a year-long review of the MSAP last year, and the reduced prices should have taken effect in January this year.
“However, this did not happen as Telekom Malaysia had appealed to MCMC to reconsider some of the pricing and the implementation was then put on hold pending the Minister’s consideration.
“Upon my appointment, I decided that this must be done in line with Pakatan Harapan’s promise to reduce broadband prices and increase its speed,” he said.
When asked if the backdated implementation of the reduced prices would translate into rebates from payments made since January this year, Gobind replied “anything is possible”.
The government was also considering recognising access to the Internet as a basic human right in Malaysia, even to the extent of, if practicable, a constitutional right.
Other options will also be considered to further reduce broadband prices to provide more affordable entry-level packages for Malaysians.