On Tuesday, the Assad government’s Syrian Telecommunications Company issued a decision to raise the prices of internet, local calls, and the Fiber Net home service, amidst a popular outcry.
The company said that the decision will come into effect starting in early October.
The decision provides for raising the cost of ADSL internet packages, based on the speed and volume of monthly consumption. The cost will increase from 1,400 Syrian pounds to 2,000 Syrian pounds for 512kb speed connections (the lowest speed available). Fares will jump from 22,000 Syrian pounds to 35,000 Syrian pounds for a bundle with 24 MB speed connections (the highest speed available).
The decision also provided for raising the cost of fixed telephone services, to 10,000 Syrian pounds instead of 4,500 Syrian pounds, and the monthly home subscription cost to 500 Syrian pounds instead of 200 Syrian pounds.
The new price increases range from 40 percent to 100 percent for some services.
For its part, mobile communications company Syriatel announced the increase in mobile call fees. The price for one minute of cellular calling on prepaid lines will be 18 Syrian pounds and 15 Syrian pounds for post-paid lines.
Previous decisions have sparked outrage from citizens on social media, who believe that the services provided by telecommunications companies in Syria are not commensurate with the new prices.
Citizens suffer from poor network coverage, slow internet, and attendant power outages.
A few days earlier, citizens complained that Syriatel had deducted part of their balance for making toll-free calls, such as emergency numbers.
However, the company stated on Monday, saying: “The technical problem with the smart grid system has been resolved and customers affected by this technical error have been compensated for calling some emergency numbers.”
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.