Telecom Firms’ Diesel Cost Jumps By 233%

According to analysis and computation of data from Nigerian telecoms operators, the cost of powering telecommunication services with diesel has jumped by at least 233.33 percent in recent months to N30 billion monthly.

The development brings the annual cost of powering telecoms services with diesel to N360 billion.

The operators under the aegis of the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria said the cost of diesel, which is required to power network towers, base stations, and offices, rose from N225 in January 2022 to over N750 in March 2022.

They stated this in a letter written to the Nigerian Communications Communication, a copy of which was sighted by our correspondent.

The letter read in part, “The telecommunication industry has been heavily financially impacted following Nigeria’s economic recession in 2020 and the effect of the ongoing Ukraine/Russia crisis. This has resulted in an increase in energy costs (which constitutes an appreciable 35 percent of ALTON’s members’ operating expenses).

“Consequently, the cost of diesel required to power operators’ towers, base stations, and offices rose by a staggering 233 per cent from N225 per litre in January 2022 to over N750 per litre in March 2022.”

According to industry data, mobile telecommunication operators use an average of 40 million litres of diesel per month to power telecom sites. Going by the diesel consumption figure and the current price of diesel, the cost of powering telecoms services will be about N30bn monthly and N360bn annually.

In its ‘2020 Subscriber/Network Data Report,’ the NCC said there were a total of 33,832 towers belonging to mobile and fixed operators as well as collocation and infrastructure companies as of 2020. It, however, added that operators had a total of 36,998 base stations at the end of the year.

Kehinde Ogunyale

Reporting on the data-driven economy, and investigations.

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