Dispute between Vodafone and BT about geographic number portability

22 June 2005

Dispute between: Vodafone Ltd ("Vodafone") and British Telecommunications plc ("BT")
Case opened: 23 February 2005
Case closed: 21 June 2005
Issue: Dispute between Vodafone and BT about geographic number portability
Relevant instrument: Ofcom resolved this dispute under Chapter 3 of Part 2 of the Communications Act 2003

On 21 June 2005 Ofcom issued a Determination under Sections 188 and 190 of the Communications Act 2003 resolving this dispute.

Please see Related Item.

Case Leader: Louise Marriage (e-mail: Louise.Marriage@ofcom.org.uk)
Case Reference: CW/00817/02/05

Text published when the case was opened

Dispute between Vodafone and BT about geographic number portability

Dispute between: Vodafone Ltd ("Vodafone") and British Telecommunications plc ("BT")
Case opened: 23 February 2005
Issue: Dispute between Vodafone and BT about geographic number portability
Relevant instrument: Ofcom intends to resolve the dispute under Chapter 3 of Part 2 of the Communications Act 2003

Update note - 25 May 2005.

Ofcom published its proposals to resolve this dispute on 25 May 2005.

Ofcom has undertaken a detailed analysis of the obligations that currently apply to BT in relation to portability in respect of geographic numbers, and in accordance with these, proposes to conclude that BT is not required to provide Vodafone with portability in relation to geographic numbers in connection with Vodafone's Wireless Office service.

Please see the related item.

Ofcom will be consulting on its proposals until 5pm on 5 June 2005. Please send responses to:

Louise Marriage
Competition and Markets
Ofcom
Riverside House
2a Southwark Bridge Road
London
SE1 9HA

or by email to louise.marriage@ofcom.org.uk

End of update note

Vodafone has asked Ofcom to resolve a dispute between it and BT about arrangements for geographic number portability ("GNP").

Vodafone has asked BT to establish GNP between BT's network and its network in order to support GNP to Vodafone's Wireless Office service.

Vodafone Wireless Office is a service for business customers that enables the customer to manage calls to mobile handsets. Subscribers to Wireless Office can have a geographic number as well as a mobile number, but all calls are routed to the same mobile handset. Calls to a Wireless Office customer's geographic number are charged to the caller at the same rate as calls to geographic numbers terminating on a fixed line, even though these calls are actually terminated on a mobile handset.

Vodafone states that BT has refused to establish GNP to enable the porting of geographic numbers from BT's network to Vodafone's network (and reciprocally, the porting of geographic numbers from Vodafone's network to BT's network), or to commence the necessary technical work required to support GNP. Vodafone argues that BT is required by General Condition 18 to establish GNP with Vodafone.

Commercial negotiations between BT and Vodafone have failed and Vodafone has referred the dispute to Ofcom for resolution.

Scope of the dispute
To determine whether BT is required to provide Vodafone with Geographic Number Portability in relation to Vodafone's Wireless Office service.

Procedural matters
Guidance on the resolution of the dispute 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. Please see related items.

All representations on the scope of the dispute should be submitted to Ofcom by 3 March 2005.

Stakeholders interested in the outcome of this investigation should notify Ofcom by 3 March 2005, describing the relevance of the outcome of the dispute to their business.

Stakeholders with relevant information and evidence in respect of this dispute should submit this to Ofcom by 17 March 2005.

Case Leader: Louise Marriage ( e-mail: Louise.Marriage@ofcom.org.uk)
Case Reference: CW/00817/02/05