German Regulator Told to Rethink Mobile Termination Rates
Published on: 1st Mar 2013
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
By: Ian Mansfield
The European Commission has halted plans of the German telecoms regulator (BNetzA) which it cl aimed could result in mobile termination rates (MTR) more than 80% higher than in many other European States.
As part of its proposal, BNetzA has opted not to follow the method for calculating MTRs set out in the Commission's 2009 Recommendation on Termination Rates as part of EU telecoms legislation. The EU said that as a result, there is the risk that consumers in countries, such as Portugal, Italy, Spain and Greece, could end-up cross-subsidising German mobile operators.
European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes said: "The vast majority of Member States play ball and are now applying EU telecoms rules in a coordinated way that brings maximum benefit to consumers and to competition. German operators should not be given special treatment."
In the letter sent to BNetzA today, the Commission explains that the new rates in the regulator's proposal do not comply with the principles and objectives of EU telecoms rules which require Member States to promote competition and the interests of consumers in the EU, as well as the development of the Single Market.
BNetzA now has three months to work with the Commission and the body of European telecoms regulators (BEREC) on a solution to this case.
In the meantime, implementation of the new mobile termination rates has been suspended.