BTL ordered to cease new rates

The Island Newspaper, Ambergris Caye, Belize            Vol. 12, No. 4            January 31, 2002

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After much controversy regarding the implementation of the new Belize Telecommunications Limited (BTL) fee structure, the Ministry of Public Utilities has confirmed that the "Stop Order" against BTL issued on December 28th, 2001 has come into effect as of Saturday, 26th January, 2002.

    A press release from the Government Press Office in Belmopan states that the Stop Order requires BTL to cease implementation of the "new tariff structure and to revert the position as it was immediately before December 1, 2001." In addition the order also asks BTL not to issue any bills to consumers based on the new tariffs. The order goes on to say that it requires BTL to program prepaid call boxes already installed in the districts to accept prepaid cards at 15 cents per call until further notice.

    Responding to this release in a notice to its customers, BTL stated that their rates "have now reverted to those in place on November 30, 2001 and all January, 2002 bills will reflect these rates." To customers questioning whether they still have to pay their December bills as issued - the answer is YES. Regarding this inquiry, BTL stated that the previously issued December 2001 bills are unaffected by the Statutory Instrument and customers should continue to settle these bills in accordance with BTL's prescribed procedures.



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