Include ‘investment’ in new policy direction: big telecoms

Originally published by The Wire Report
Author: Anja Karadeglija

Canada’s four largest wireless providers are asking the government to incorporate references to “investment” and the previous, market-focused policy direction in its proposed new directive, meant to foster affordability and consumer interests.

“Now is not the time to implement a significant shift in the Government’s long-standing policy of encouraging facilities-based competition, which has given Canadians world-leading networks at affordable prices with minimal government investment compared to other countries,” BCE Inc. said in its submission to the government.

The government announced the new policy direction in February. It would require the regulator to consider how regulatory measures “can promote competition, affordability, consumer interests and innovation” in issuing new regulations and rulings. In contrast, the previous policy direction, dating from 2006, requires the CRTC to “rely on market forces to the maximum extent feasible as the means of achieving the telecommunications policy objectives.”

As experts predicted, some of Canada’s largest wireless providers took issue with the wording of the directive.

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