After roaming charges for calls made between the Western Balkan countries were cancelled on 1 July this year, the next step is to reduce roaming prices for calls made between the WB Countries and the EU Member States. This was also discussed at the EU-Western Balkans leaders’ summit in Slovenia a few days ago.
“Based on the successful implementation of the regional roaming agreement and the launch of the free-roaming regime in the Western Balkans on 1 July 2021, we welcome the creation of a ‘roadmap’ to set clear conditions and targets for the reduction of roaming prices of calls between the EU and the Western Balkans,” is written in point 16 of the draft official statement that came out after the meeting.
The European Commissioner for Enlargement, Oliver Varhelyi, has recently confirmed that he had spoken at length with representatives of telecom operators in the Western Balkans. On that occasion, all major operators in Serbia (Telekom, A1 and Telenor) confirmed that the initiative had been launched and that it would potentially reduce costs not only for service users but also for the business sector too.
Currently, the price of outgoing calls to EU countries varies between 99 and 150 dinars per minute of the call and the price of incoming calls is between 36 and 99 dinars per minute. Text messages cost between 24 and 30 dinars apiece, while the price of a megabyte ranges from 614 to 1,000 dinars, but with the adoption of the new rules these prices would be drastically lower.
Telekom Srbija says that, at the moment, nobody knows how much the prices would be lowered. “There is a proposal for a subsequent price reduction for roaming traffic from 2023, although there is a clear willingness to reduce prices even earlier. The degree to which tariffs will be reduced is now being assessed.”
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