Qtel will not raise prices amid fears of inflation after Qatar recently announced hefty pay hike for Qatari government employees, Qtel’s senior officials told the media yesterday.
Laying down Qtel’s strategy to local media, Sheikh Saud bin Nasser Al Thani, Chief Executive Officer of Qtel, said the state-owned telecom operator will not increase prices despite raise in salaries of Qatari government employees, instead he assured more competitive prices, more affordable options and customer focused services for its clients.
“We congratulate all those in the public sector who are benefiting from the recently-announced pay increases as a reward for their hard work and diligence,” said Sheikh Saud.
“We understand that the intent of these increases is to improve quality of life and personal wealth throughout Qatar, and we aim to set an example for the whole business sector by contributing to this programme. Our aim is to offer new products and services and better value for all our customers, reducing the cost of communication and increasing the disposable income available for our customers.” While the Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani’s directive is much appreciated, this should not be used by companies to increase prices, but rather provide better prices and services to the consumers, according to Waleed Mohammed Al Sayed, Chief Operating Officer, Qtel.
“We at Qtel are committed to come up with better services and prices for all our valued customers,” said Al Sayed. Qtel’s management strategy according to Sheikh Saud is led by Qatar National Vision 2030 centred on moving toward a knowledge-based economy.
“Qtel will always support Emir’s National Vision for 2030 and we are committed to building a nationwide technology network capable of supporting the growth of the knowledge-based economy,” he said, stressing they will exert downward pressure on pricing where possible to ensure the benefits are available to all.
To support this vision, Qtel is concentrating on three major strands of its customer-facing strategy this year. One key strand is providing competitive pricing and greater value wherever possible across its operations. There has been a series of permanent price reductions for mobile calls and mobile Internet this year, augmented by ongoing promotional price reductions.
“We have already implemented 18 promotional and six permanent price reductions,” claimed Al Sayed adding, Qtel has taken the cost down from QR10 to QR0.55 for all pay-as-you-go Mobile Internet customers. The second major strand will be the roll-out of Fibre to the Home (FTTH) programme over the coming months.
“Fibre to the Home will serve 140,000 households and as of now 1,200km of the 2,500km of fibre cable have already been laid across Qatar. With speed 12 times faster than the one available now, FTTH will offer the fastest-ever Internet experience, as well as high definition television through Qtel Mozaic TV,” said Al Sayed.
He said the service will be launched commercially shortly after approval from ictQatar on pricing and tariff packages. Customer service is also set for upgrades as part of Qtel’s third strategic stream, with the company adding new resources to its call centres and network of shops throughout the country. “In the last two months we hired 70 staff and 40 more are on training to join the team soon,” Al Sayed said in response to a query on customer complaints on call waiting time at Qtel call centre.
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