Implementing the effective end of retail roaming charges under fair market conditions
On the 15th of October 2015, MVNO Europe Chair Jacques Bonifay and CEO of Transatel was invited to speak at the BEREC Stakeholders Forum. Commenting on the draft 2016 BEREC work programme, J. Bonifay stressed the ability of MVNOs, as agile players, to innovate quickly, adding real value on the telecoms market and for European end-users. He also insisted on MVNOs’ preparedness to implement the end of retail roaming charges in Europe, which has been the association’s position from the early beginning of the discussions on the Single Telecoms Market regulation.
However, the end of roaming can only be achieved if it is accompanied by a real review of wholesale roaming caps as currently regulated. “Reducing wholesale caps is a simple measure that works” to enable MVNO entry and mobile competition in general, he said. Indeed, due to a structural absence of bargaining power, MVNOs are usually required to pay maximum rates when striking deals with MNOs on providing roaming access to their customers. In order to avoid restrictions and complex clauses for end-users and to ensure fair market conditions for all players, wholesale caps need to be reduced substantially so as to better reflect the actual cost of international roaming.
Machine-to-Machine Communications: regulatory action to enhance MVNO innovation
Jacques Bonifay also had the opportunity to speak on Machine-to-Machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) communications. MVNOs intend to play a significant role in this sector on account of their capacity to be first-movers in innovative and emerging markets, despite competition constraints. MVNOs are already taking advantage of the existing technical opportunities offered by national regulators and the International Telecommunications Union. MVNO Europe would welcome European Union’s action to ensure the reliability of dedicated M2M numbers: “there is value for a EU number range, attached to a low Mobile Termination Rate, and reachable in a short period of time”, Jacques Bonifay said.
MVNO Europe is actively engaged with BEREC in designing future-proof regulations for the telecoms sector. It is taking part in BEREC consultations and studies on roaming wholesale markets, roaming fair use policy and machine-to-machine communications.
- Video of BEREC event; J.Bonifay’s speech at 1’09’’20’’’ in first record
- Documents and information on the Forum, including agenda
- Our article on the adoption of the Telecom Single Market package (July 2015)