Dispute between Mapesbury Communications and T-Mobile about mobile termination rates

13 February 2009

Dispute between: Mapesbury Communications Ltd (MCom) and T-Mobile (UK) Ltd (T-Mobile)
Case opened: 21 November 2008
Case closed: 20 March 2009
Issue: MCom and T-Mobile have made a joint submission asking Ofcom to resolve a dispute under section 185(1) of the Communications Act 2003 (the Act) between themselves concerning the termination rate payable by T-Mobile for calls originated on T-Mobiles network and terminated on MComs network.
Relevant instrument: Ofcom resolved this dispute using its powers under Chapter 3 of Part 2 of the Act.

On 20 March 2009 Ofcom issued a determination to MCom and T-Mobile resolving the dispute. Please see related item.

Update note 13 February 2009

Ofcom issued a draft determination in relation to this dispute to the parties in dispute and the nine parties which registered as interested parties in this dispute on 13 February 2009. Please see the related item.

Ofcom will be consulting on its proposals until 5pm on 27 February 2009. Please send responses to:

Damien Kelly
Competition Group
Riverside House
2a Southwark Bridge Road

or by email to damienkelly@ofcom.org.uk

End of update note

T-Mobile and MCom have failed to agree the level of the termination rate charged for the termination for calls originated on T-Mobiles network and terminated on MComs network. T-Mobile and MCom do not currently have a direct interconnection agreement and continue to convey calls to each other through a transit provider.

Ofcom recognises that on the face of the referral there appears to be a dispute between the parties that commercial negotiations have failed to resolve. Ofcom has therefore accepted this dispute for resolution.

In resolving disputes Ofcom must act in accordance with the six Community requirements that give effect to Article 8 of the Framework Directive.
In summary, those requirements are:

  • to promote competition in communications markets;
  • to secure that Ofcom contributes to development of the European internal market;
  • to promote the interests of all European Union citizens;
  • to act in a manner which, so far as practicable, is technology-neutral;
  • to encourage, to the extent Ofcom considers it appropriate, the provision of network access and service interoperability; and
  • to encourage such compliance with certain international standards as is necessary for facilitating service interoperability and securing freedom of choice for the customers of communications providers.

Scope of the dispute:

The scope of the dispute is to determine the termination rate payable by T-Mobile for voice calls originating on T-Mobiles network and terminating on MComs network.

Procedural matters:

Guidance on the resolution of disputes can be found in Ofcom's Guidelines for the handling of competition complaints, and complaints and disputes about breaches of conditions imposed under the EU Directives.

All representations on the scope of the disputes should be submitted to Ofcom by 28 November 2008.

Stakeholders interested in the outcome of this dispute should notify Ofcom by 28 November 2008, describing the relevance of the outcome of this dispute to their business. Stakeholders with relevant information and evidence in respect of these disputes should submit this to Ofcom by 12 December 2008.

Stakeholders who wish Ofcom to join them as parties to the dispute must provide evidence, as set out in Ofcom's Guidelines, that they are in dispute.

Case Leader: Damien Kelly ( e-mail:damien.kelly@ofcom.org.uk)
Case Reference: CW/01000/10/08