Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) and Mahanagar Telecom Nigam Limited (MTNL)have asked the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to apply the tariff fixation rules only on telcos with more than 15 per cent subscriber base in a service area. As such, telcos with lower or negligible user base should be exempt from the purview of minimum floor price.

Thus, while the two state run telecom operators are in favour of fixing of floor price, they have proposed this condition of non-applicability to telcos with less than 15 per cent market share.

As per TRAI’s latest data, BSNL has about 10.3 per cent market share in all India mobile subscriber base and MTNL has 0.29 per cent mobile market share.

In their recommendations on the TRAI’s consultation paper on tariff issues of telecom services, the two state run telecom operators have maintained that even though the operators have hiked their tariff recently, they remain susceptible from each other to maintain their customer base. Further, e even with the increase in tariffs the average revenue per user (ARPU) levels are below the levels needed for long term survival.

Further, the two telcos are of the view that irrespective of the parameters used to fix the floor prices, TRAI should ensure that the exercise does not result in windfall profits for a few operators.

Moreover, BSNL and MTNL have also said thatfloor prices should be fixed for mobile data services and should applied uniformly to different category of subscribers. In addition, they have also proposed the fixing of floor pricefor voice calls and SMS.