APA-Harare (Zimbabwe) Zimbabwe's largest mobile telephone network is phasing out Zimbabwe dollar tariffs and introducing United States denominated recharge cards from Tuesday, APA learns here.
Econet Wireless announced that the move to charge in foreign currency was meant to improve services by enabling the company to invest in new equipment and settle its foreign currency obligations.
“Econet is introducing US dollar recharge cards from 30 December 2008. Please use your Zimbabwe dollar cards by midnight 29 December 2008 as they will expire thereafter," it said in a notice to subscribers.
Local calls would cost around US$0.30 per minute while text messages would cost US$0.15.
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The move by Econet to charge in foreign currency highlights the lack of confidence in the local currency by the business sector and individuals in the wake of Zimbabwe's hyperinflationary environment.
With inflation pegged at a world-record 231 million percent as of July, prices in Zimbabwe are doubling daily, forcing most service providers to refuse payment in Zimdollars.
Econet is Zimbabwe's largest cellular phone network, with a subscriber base of about one million.
The two other networks are the state-run NetOne and Telecel Zimbabwe.
Source: Cellular News.