Airtel introduces new service in Africa

By Thandisizwe Mgudlwa

Bharti Airtel says its customers in Africa will now get Free incoming
calls while roaming on its South Asia Network.

This is the worlds’ first intercontinental roaming facility offering
free incoming calls leverages Airtel’s network reach in India, Sri
Lanka and Bangladesh

To benefit African businessmen, tourists and students traveling to the
Indian sub-continent,

The announcement was made last week in Nairobi, Kenya.

Airtel, a leading global telecommunications services provider with
operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, introduces 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.

Also, Airtel customers already avail this facility across the
company’s mobile network in 17 countries across Africa.

And further, 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

In addition, by offering free incoming calls whilst roaming, the
service ups the ante for global telecom providers as the seamless
service across continents is a world-first amongst mobile service
providers. This will greatly benefit the travelling population,
consisting of tourists, corporates, businessmen and students who want
to keep in touch with people back home.

Andre Beyers, Chief Marketing Officer, Airtel Africa, commenting on
the service 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.”

Furthermore, within 17 African countries, ONE NETWORK also allows
Airtel customers to use their local Airtel SIM cards whilst abroad,
giving them access to attractive rates for calls made, access data,
enjoy value added services and recharge using local top up vouchers in
the country visited.

Notably, the service is poised 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.

The countries covered by Airtel One Network Services are: Kenya,
Burkina Faso, Chad, Congo Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo,
Gabon, Ghana, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles,
Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, India, Bangladesh and Sri

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