Canadian Regulator Launches Probe into Mobile Roaming Rates

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Canada's telecoms regulator the CRTC says that it is taking a closer look at wholesale wireless roaming arrangements in the country. The first step is a proceeding to examine whether wireless service providers are placing their Canadian competitors at an unfair competitive disadvantage.

Based on information obtained by the CRTC, some of the large providers are allged to be charging, or proposing to charge, their smaller Canadian competitors significantly higher wholesale roaming rates than those charged to U.S.-based wireless companies.

"We are concerned that some wireless companies may be making it unfairly difficult for Canadian providers that do not operate a national network to compete in the marketplace," said Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC. "If we find that this is happening in the market, we will act to rectify the situation."

Canadian wholesale wireless market

In early 2014, the CRTC will also launch a second proceeding to further examine the state of the mobile wireless services market, the sustainability of competition in the Canadian wireless market, and what regulatory measures may be required if the CRTC were to find the market is not sufficiently competitive.

"We are equally concerned that the current wholesale arrangements may be having a negative impact on the competitiveness of the Canadian wireless market and, ultimately, on the consumer experience," said Jean-Pierre Blais.

The details of this proceeding will be made public in early 2014.

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Tags: crtc  roaming  Canada 

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