Best Prices

Sept 08, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka cellco Mobitel, a unit of fixed access carrier Sri Lanka Telecom is readying to call proposals to buy international bandwidth from cheaper suppliers, because its parent was too expensive, an official said. “We are not happy with the prices they extend to us,” Mobitel chief executive Suren Amarasekera told a regional GSM (global system for mobile communications) Association conference in Colombo.

“We have received approval form our board to call for international RFPs (requests for proposals) to US, UK and Asia Pacific.”

Amarasekera said international bandwidth and device costs were the two biggest cost items in providing broadband connections, which was outside the control of the operator.

SLT is a shareholder of the SEA-ME-WE cable consortium and was the sole supplier of submarine capacity to the island for decades, when it was the incumbent operator with an international monopoly.

Amarasekera said proposals may be called as early as this month and Mobitel’s new broadband tariffs were announced in expectations of cheaper international connectivity.

“In order to sustain our margins in the broadband market we need to connect to major internet hubs at better rates,” Amarasekera sai