TOLL Free Telecom launched a new phone service in Cambodia Thursday, providing free calls for customers to businesses that officials say will help increase economic activity.
Richard Chiew, marketing consultant for the Taiwanese-invested company, said Toll Free will put the numbers into operation next month.
The toll-free numbers will allow customers to call businesses – from small enterprises to large firms – without charge. Service-subscribing businesses pick up the tab, he said.
For a toll-free number subscribers pay US$30 for a deposit, $10 for registration and installation and service costs of $6 per month.
In another plan called Special Toll, subscribers and callers split the cost of the call, each paying US$0.0275 per minute.
As in the United States, toll-free numbers will have the prefix 1-800, followed by the numbers 20, 21 and 22, and then by an assigned number.
David Meng, managing director for Toll Free Telecom (Cambodia) Co, said Thursday that the initial capital for this investment was $500,000.
“It will increase opportunities for businesses when potential customers do not hesitate to call,” he said.
Toll Free subcontracted under Telecom Cambodia to establish the service.
“The small and medium enterprises will have more opportunities to strengthen their products and business activities and to allow consumers to order products and services from their companies,” Chin Bun Sean, secretary of state at the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, said Thursday.
He urged telecom companies to agree on an “appropriate” interconnection fee with the company.
“In principle, I’d like to recommend that the charges should be equal to or less than normal commercial charges, as Toll Free’s service is serving the public interest and is charging the receiver instead of the caller,” he said.
Heng Heang, president of the Phnom Penh Small and Medium Industries Association and owner of Heng Heang Enterprise, which produces fish sauce for local markets, said Thursday he saw uses for the new service.
“It’s kind of encouraging more customers to contact us, as they needn’t worry about the phone service charge,” he said. “The monthly fee is reasonable. In principle, we are interested in using this service.”