13 Nov 2008

Solomon Islands is losing out on cheap telecommunications says deputy PM

12:15 pm on 13 November 2008

The Solomon Islands deputy prime minister says the country is losing out on the benefits of cheap telecommunications.

Fred Fono made the remarks after his recent visit to Fiji, where telecommunications company Digicel is offering cheap and competitive services to locals there.

Mr Fono says in Fiji, a mobile handset only costs ten US dollars where as in the Solomon's the average price of a mobile handset costs 100 US dollars.

He says in the Solomon's a domestic call cost 42 US cents a minute while in Fiji it cost 4 US cents.

Mr Fono says the Government is committed to liberalising the telecommunications sector and eliminating the monopolies over mobile services and the international gateway.

Solomon Telekom 15 year monopoly in the country is currently into its fifth year and is now up for review.