African governments have been told to reduce handset taxes, roaming rates, decongest the spectrum and have strong infrastructure to improve telecommunications sector.

The GSMA head of mobile for development, Yasmina McCarty, said high excise duty on handset was making the products unaffordable to the majority of people. She was speaking during a recent conference on mobile phone companies here.

GSMA represents the interests of mobile network operators worldwide. It unites nearly 800 operators. GSMA proposes that import duty on handsets be reduced to 10 from 17 per cent.

Consumers are subject to taxes on devices, subscription and usage, leading to the increase in total cost of mobile ownership and create barriers to affordability. In that regard, mobile tax reforms, according to her, would make devices affordable and have impact on number of internet connection, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and tax revenue.

Source: Nam News Network