Russia Planning To ban VOIP Services

Traditional Telecom Companies all over the world are forcing local govt to take action against VOIP Services which are almost 70% cheaper than traditional phone companies. Russia might just join the league of VOIP banning countries.In Russia, business lobby is busy with local government to restrict VOIP Providers to operate VOIP services in russia. The local phone companies are claiming that landline and cellular phone companies are losing revenue to foreign operators of the Web-based services.The Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, the country’s most prominent business lobby, recommended on behalf of the Russian cellular company MegaFon that lawmakers regulate VoIP service. The lobby is specifically targeting prominent VOIP Providers such as Skype which is extremely popular in russia.According to NYTimes, Skype has immediately responded to the news and said, “The imposition of such surcharges unfair and discriminatory against the services involved, which are a threat to phone company revenue from voice calling.”The final decision is not officially out yet but it could either mean a heavy surcharge on VOIP calls terminations or a service tax being imposed on VOIP services which would automatically make VOIP calls costlier than national IDD services.I would say, There will be more countries like russia which would ban or impose taxes on VOIP services to favour local telecom companies. Its all about money!I am wondering if this regulation comes into effect, whats the future of VOIP providers like gtalk2voip and flaphone ?

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