The European Commission has expressed concerns as to how wholesale tariffs,
charged by the five UK mobile operators for terminating calls to their
customers, have been assessed. In the Commission's view, Ofcom's proposed
tariffs keep termination values higher than necessary due to 3G spectrum
cost valuations which risk overestimating the costs
The Commission therefore asks the UK watchdog to reconsider the valuations.
OFCOM's approach would be detrimental to fair competition in the UK's mobile
market and lead to higher consumer prices for consumers.
EU Information Society and Media Commissioner Viviane Reding wrote a "letter
of comment" to the Office of Communications, or Ofcom, arguing that
operators were charging each other too much to interconnect calls.
"I am concerned that Ofcom's approach to calculate 3G spectrum costs could
hinder the movement towards lower mobile interconnection prices," Reding
A Commission official said on average mobile phone operators charge about 8
euro cents (five pence) a minute to permit other companies to connect to
their customers. By contrast, fixed-line operators charge only 0.8 euro
cents a minute.
He said the end result was to redistribute transfer money from fixed-line
operators to mobile users.
Copy of the Commission's letter is available via http://europa.eu.int/rapid/pressRele...guiLanguage=en
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