Consumer welfare may soon improve when telecom service providers adopt the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore's (IDA) 'Advisory Guidelines for Prepaid International Calling Card Services'1...
Singapore, 03 March 2003 | For Immediate Release
Consumer welfare may soon improve when telecom service providers adopt the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore's (IDA) 'Advisory Guidelines for Prepaid International Calling Card Services'1.
The advisory guidelines, issued on 1 March 2003, aim to encourage prepaid international calling card service providers to adopt a common set of industry best practices, and to help consumers make more informed choices. The adoption of the advisory guidelines is on a voluntary basis. The guidelines incorporate comments from IDA's public consultation exercise2 for a proposed 'Voluntary Code for Prepaid International Calling Card Services', conducted in December 2002.
Some of the recommended practices listed in the guidelines include the provision of sufficient information on prepayments and deposits, public announcement of changes or variations in service charges, and the refund of card balances for disrupted or terminated services.
With the full liberalisation of the telecommunication market in April 2000, there are now more than 30 service providers offering more than 100 types of prepaid international calling cards.
IDA deputy chief executive and director-general (Telecoms) Leong Keng Thai said, "Currently, the telecom industry adopts different practices for service terms and conditions, service costs and customer service. Through the voluntary adoption of the guidelines by the industry, we hope that consumers will now have service prices, terms, refund options made more transparent to them."
The advisory guidelines can be downloaded from the IDA website at https://www.imda.gov.sg/, in the section "Policy & Regulation", "Consultation Papers".
ISSUED BY CORPORATE COMMUNICATION DIVISION
INFOCOMM DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY OF SINGAPORE
Notes to Editor:
1 Prepaid international calling card services refers to any international call service (irrespective of medium, e.g. leased circuits, internet-based, etc.) where a customer pays for the service prior to use and where the actual usage expenditure is deducted from the prepaid amount following each service use.
2 IDA's public consultation exercise closed on 9 December 2002. IDA has carefully considered the comments received and has revised the proposed voluntary code accordingly. The proposed voluntary code has been issued as a set of advisory guidelines.
About Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is a dynamic organisation with an integrated perspective to developing, promoting and regulating info-communications in Singapore. In the fast-changing and converging spheres of telecommunications, information and media technologies, IDA will be the catalyst for change and growth in Singapore's evolution into a vibrant global info-communications technology centre. For more information, visit https://www.imda.gov.sg/
For media clarification, please contact:
Manager, Corporate Communication
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
Tel: +65 6211 1997
Fax: +65 6211 2227