The inquiry by the Competition Commission looked at Vodacom and MTN prices in countries such as Lesotho, Nigeria and Rwanda after South Africans persistently complained about the high prices they were being charged.
The Competition Commission announced on Wednesday South African data users were being overcharged by Vodacom and MTN compared to other countries where they also operate.
The commission’s data services market inquiry report released on Wednesday said: “The existing international comparisons on mobile prepaid data prices collectively indicated that South Africa currently performs poorly relative to other countries, with prices generally on the more expensive end.”
The inquiry looked at Vodacom and MTN prices in countries such as Lesotho, Nigeria and Rwanda after South Africans persistently complained about the high prices of data and the “importance of data affordability for the South African economy and consumers”.
Below is how much each service provider was charging in these countries for 1GB of prepaid data in 2017.
MTN SA: R159
Vodacom Angola: R44
Vodacom Lesotho: R100
However, the inquiry said – as per the pricing analysis it undertook – these two operators “are to a large extent able to price independently of the challenger networks”.
The inquiry relied on the 2017 report on mobile tariffs by Independent Communications Authority of South Africa.
($1 = R13,32 – the annual average exchange rate in 2017, according to Nedbank quoting Reuters figures.)
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