(MEBG) – The Algerian ministry of Post and Telecommunications confirmed that from now on local GSM cell-phone subscribers can use their regular sets abroad without a need to change their number, following a unanimous Senate vote on a law defining the general rules of telecommunications.
Altering GSM operators when changing locations is made possible through a technology called Roaming International. This technology was implemented following a series of signed agreements with countries considered key commercial partners. These include France, Morocco, Tunisia, Qatar and soon, the UAE.
Negotiations are currently taking place in order to expand this service to additional countries in Europe, such as Italy, Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom and Belgium.
International services will be provided to the 60,000 Algerian GSM subscribers, though at higher than local rates. Calls will be charged with a premium in relation to the location from which the call is placed. France’s Itineris, for example, charges an extra 10 to 20 percent for such a service, while Qatar’s Vodafone fees an additional 15 percent.
The Roaming service will most likely set the P&T ministry back by approximately $7 to $8 million, in addition to the $15 million already invested in the establishment of the national GSM network. These levies are rather costly for the average Algerian taxpayer, given the mere 0.3 percent cell-phone user-rate.