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Bangladesh: Make sure no one monopolises MFS market, Jabbar says to BCC

Posts and Telecommunications Minister Mustafa Jabbar has called on the Competition Commission to ensure that monopolies are not maintained in order to curb competition in any market including Mobile Financial Service (MFS)

Dhaka — The Posts and Minister Mustafa Jabbar has called on the Competition Commission to ensure that monopolies are not maintained in order to curb competition in any market including Mobile Financial Service (MFS).

The Minister expressed concern that such inequality and non-competition are being created in the market due to lack of interoperability.

“We have adopted a free market economy,” he said. Its main condition is competition. In order to maintain this, a commission like the Competition Commission has been formed so that there is no monopoly. So that no one alone can control the market. Because if there is no competition, people will suffer the most. I will definitely keep the competition alive and not allow it to become a monopoly.

This was stated by Posts and Minister Mustafa Jabbar while addressing as the chief guest at a webinar titled ‘Context and Partnership in Context: Context MFS’ organized by Telecom Reporters Network Bangladesh (TRNB). Policymakers and concerned persons of the country’s economic sector participated in the discussion.

Mustafa Jabbar said that in a country like China, there is a need to control the monopoly of giants like Alibaba.

He drew the attention of the competition commission and said, “Don’t wait for the complaint.” Because people are afraid of the process of complaining, they are also afraid of being harassed. So make sure that no one monopolizes the MFS market.

Speaking as the special guest on the occasion, Chairman of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission Sham Sunder Sikder said there was a monopoly in the MFS market in the country. ‘Cash’ has been able to break the monopoly. There must be competition. Although it has decreased a lot, there is still a monopoly.

He said: “Bangladesh Bank had set a maximum limit of Tk 18,000 per thousand. But now 20 Tk is being taken there. No one is protesting with one and a half Tk, but with one and a half Tk it becomes thousands of crores of Tk. It’s being stolen directly. At the time, he emphasized the need to reduce MFS charges.”

Competition Commission Chairman Mofizul Islam said it is the responsibility of the government to see if there are players in the market who are playing foul. No problem from the place of policy support. If the market is competitive, then the consumer benefits, while the supply chain or investors benefit. We have not received any complaints yet. The service charge that Bangladesh Bank has fixed, not to take more than Tk 18. If this is not accepted, then Bangladesh Bank should take action.

Mahtab Uddin Ahmed, MD & CEO of Robi Axiata Limited and President of MTB, said, “We have been cooperating to keep the MFSs running from the beginning. MFS in Bangladesh will not be like that in the future. When digital currency comes along, there will be no distributors. There are some more cost-cutting opportunities. Reducing costs will be good for customers.

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