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OECD updates international roaming progress

The OECD has published 'Developments in international mobile roaming', a report that describes progress on an OECD recommendation from 2012 on policy principles "to ensure effective competition, consumer awareness and protection, and a fair price level in international roaming services". It notes that significant progress has been made in reducing international mobile roaming (IMR) prices since 2012, either by ensuring effective competition or, in its absence, applying regulation. "Many mobile network operators have introduced specific roaming packages as 'add-ons' to existing subscriber contracts, in particular for mobile data roaming but retail prices and wholesale costs remain high in some countries," the report says. The European Union regulatory initiatives in the IMR market have provided a benchmark for many countries outside the EU. "Outside of the EU there have been few specific regulatory initiatives to reduce roaming prices to competitive levels, though a consideration of competition dynamics is inherent in any review of industry consolidation or the introduction of new mobile operators." Further: "Structural measures, as is the case of the EU Regulation III, maintaining a sufficient number of players to enable wholesale competition for MVNOs and technological change, may help such competition emerge and may provide the basis to reduce the need for regulation in the future. However, the introduction of such measures should be carefully assessed before being implemented as some mobile operators say the European experience suggests that they require high investments from operators while their efficacy has not been proven." Read More

  • Tuesday, 24 May 2016

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