Global telecommunications services provider Bharti Airtel (“Airtel”) has introduced the world’s first free intercontinental incoming roaming service by including India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to its current bouquet of One Network services for its African customers.
Airtel customers in Africa will not need to register for the One Network service or buy new SIM cards as they will now be automatically provisioned as ‘citizens’ of Airtel’s borderless network across 20 countries in Africa and Asia.
This offers opportunities to a base of 60 million Airtel customers in Africa to roam at affordable tariffs in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
The company believes that by offering free incoming calls whilst roaming, the service ups the ante for global telecom providers who can leverage off a seamless service across continents. This represents a world-first amongst mobile service providers claims Airtel.
Commenting on the service, Andre Beyers, Chief Marketing Officer, Airtel Africa said: “Mobile communication has the ability to connect communities. Airtel’s ONE NETWORK now gives our customers the ability to drastically reduce roaming charges whilst travelling within and across the two continents. Our goal is to provide affordable and relevant mobile communication solutions across borders.”
The service is expected to benefit increasing intra-regional trade between Africa and the South Asian nations which currently stands at over USD 60Billion. Equally, the number of travellers between Africa and the 3 countries has been growing. India is the main destination for most of African travellers for trade, its tertiary educational institutions and affordable medical facilities.