Expiry of prepaid load gets extension

GONE are the days when prepaid load had to be consumed for some days or weeks, or run the risk of losing it all.

On Wednesday, a joint memorandum cicular (JMC) ordered the extension of the expiry of prepaid loads to one year.

Signed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Information and Communications (DICT) and the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), the JMC amended NTC’s Memorandum Circular No. 03-07-2009, or the Guidelines on Prepaid Loads that cover all prepaid loads of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) providers and public telecommunications entities.

Prepaid loads of whatever amount will now have an expiration date that will last up to one year from the date of the top-up.

“Such move affords subscribers more time to use their prepaid loads. Exclusion to this coverage will only be limited to those prepaid loads purchased for promotions and other services with a specific period of use, as approved by DTI and NTC,” the trade department said in a statement yesterday.

Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said this will provide the public, especially micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), better opportunities to do business more easily by making calls or sending an SMS to their customers, or by accessing the internet to conduct e-commerce.

“Through greater opportunities accessible via telecommunications, our MSMEs will be able to help us generate inclusive development and shared prosperity for all Filipinos, especially for those at the bottom of the pyramid,” he said.

As of December 2016, there are around 130 million cellphone subscribers in the country.

Last 2009, the number of subscribers was at 75.57 million. DTI said the carrying cost per subscriber was P3 per day.

“Taking into consideration that more than 90 percent of the costs of the networks are fixed, the carrying cost per subscriber has decreased as the number of subscribers has increased since then,” said Lopez.
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