Indotel to pressure telecom companies for better service
In an interview with the Corripio media group, the president of the board of Indotel Gedeon Santos, said yesterday, 23 April 2014, that the level of service to consumers provided by telecom sector has eroded over the past eight years. He attributed the decline in customer satisfaction with the telecom companies to a lack of government regulation and oversight. Santos explained that since 2006, the government had allowed the telecom companies to essentially be self-regulated as the government became less and less engaged in the industry. Although the policy of encouraging private-sector driven innovation and investment in telecommunications in the country worked well initially, the lack of government oversight of the industry has appeared to have created an unforeseen complacency within telecom companies that has led to a decline in levels of the quality and efficiency of service to consumers nationwide.
Santos said the only way that the quality of service to consumers can be restored is by the government retaking its role as the sector regulator. Santos, citing a report that was recently published, noted that the levels of telecommunication service in the Dominican Republic had declined by 44% over the past several years and that the telecommunication services in the country now rank below the region’s average.
Santos expects that the government’s new commitment to energetically supervise and oversee the telecom sector will eventually improve the communication services in the country, restoring the Dominican Republic as a regional leader in telecom services.
Santos said that the Indotel is developing new standards that will mandate that telecom companies establish and maintain a high level of service quality or else face stiff penalities and sanctions.
The Indotel director also said the agency will renew its commitment to address consumer complaints, noting that many customers feel they have no viable options to express their complaints about poor telecommunication services.
Santos said a team is working on reforming the Telecom Law so that it is more effective and geared to protect consumers. He noted that Indotel is also evaluating what changes can be made to contracts between telecom companies and consumers that would offer these more flexibility when choosing telecommunication services.
Santos said that Indotel would be investing RD$600 million a year in programs to improve the quality of telecom services in the country and to address connectivity issues and promote the expansion of access to digital telecommunication services for up to 50,000 low-income households over the next two years. Santos also promised to assist micro and small businesses to have better access to high-speed telecommunication services through Indotel’s new the “Hogar conectado” and “Myipyme conectado” programs.
Finally, Santos said that Indotel will be working closely with other government agencies in the roll-out of the new 911 Emergency Services program.
Source: DR1, Eldia
Category: DR News |