Globacom, one of Nigeria’s major telcos, has been granted a further 21-day grace period to resolve and pay the interconnect fees — an amount charged by telco for calls terminating on their network — it owes MTN, one day after the telecoms regulator’s planned to begin a phased disconnection. 

“The Commission is pleased to announce that the parties have now reached an agreement to resolve all outstanding issues between them,” the Nigerian Communications Commission said in a press statement. “The Commission expects MTN and Glo to resolve all outstanding issues within the 21 days.” 

On January 8, the NCC issued a disconnection notice to Globacom, which permitted MTN to disconnect Glo subscribers over years of unpaid interconnect fees. According to one publication, Glo owes around ₦6 billion ($6.7 million) in fees to MTN. The standard interconnect fee for local calls in Nigeria is ₦4.30k per minute.

A phased disconnection would have meant that Glo’s 61.39 million subscribers would have been unable to call MTN users. However, MTN users would still have been able to reach Glo users.

According to the Daily Trust, Glo denied any claim that it owed MTN any outstanding fees. “We do not owe MTN any interconnect charges,” said an unnamed Glo official quoted by the publication. The dispute over interconnect fees stretches back over 15 years, with several threats from MTN to disconnect Glo. In 2019, MTN disconnected Globacom from its network for five days, forcing Glo to pay around ₦2.6 billion in owed interconnect fees out of a total ₦4.4 billion. Airtel also threatened to disconnect Glo during the same period.

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