In its effort to help bridge the digital divide, the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT) has announced significant reductions in the cost of its residential Internet service rates for its Gold and Silver customers, effective from January 1, 2017.GTT Head officeGold has been reduced by 36 per cent to $9599, while the Silver is down 16 per cent to $8399.According to a statement from GTT, these reductions are evident of the company’s commitment to continue offering its Internet service to customers, with significantly more value on its plans, even as the company focuses on pushing faster and more reliable broadband services into homes and businesses.These higher tiers enable users to stream, surf and download faster at speeds up to 10 megabytes per second. The Bronze service, ideal for casual surfing such as the use of email services, is up now to $5999.GTT is guaranteeing customers that these prices will remain unchanged when the new Value Added Tax (VAT) regime comes into effect.“We are committed to bringing more affordable Internet to our customers and excited tocontinue to bridge Guyana’s digital divide. This is just the first in a number of exciting changes that GTT will be offering its customers in 2017, with significant speed and service quality upgrades on the horizon,” the company stated.The telephone giant launched the Internet plans back in April 2016, offering 10 megabytes per second (MBPS) Internet speeds, five times faster than what was previously offered and with no extra cost to its customers.Then Chief Executive Officer Radha Krishna Sharma had explained that the Internet service would be sold in bronze, silver and gold packages within the range of 1MBPS to 10MBPS. Bronze package subscribers paid the usual $4999 monthly.Silver package customers paid $9980 but with improved speeds of up to 5MBPS, while Gold package subscribers had up to 10MBPS, at $14,979 per month.While the cost is reduced on residential Internet services, only recently Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Justin Nedd told media operatives that with the introduction of VAT on broadband Internet service and data plans sold to mobile and corporate customers, the company would incur an additional expense in the vicinity of US$6 million (G$1.2 billion).Nedd pointed out that GTT already forked over more than half of its earnings to taxes and pointed to a 45 per cent Corporate Tax.
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