Wholesale mobile voice call termination

  • Start: 20 May 2009
  • Status: Closed
  • End: 29 July 2009

When fixed and mobile operators offer their customers the ability to call UK mobile numbers, they pay mobile operators a wholesale charge to complete those calls.

The rates that operators pay are known as “mobile call termination” (MCT) charges.

On 31 March 2011, the current rules which set wholesale MCT charges will expire. In our Mobile Sector Assessment (MSA I) we asked what rules, if any, should apply after that time. This consultation initiates a market review to consider that question in more detail.

This consultation focuses primarily on how changes in mobile markets might impact regulation of MCT after March 2011(which is one reason why this market review is closely related to our MSA consultations, the second of which will be published shortly). The mobile sector is changing rapidly; for an increasing number of users, mobile services are used to access the internet and send messages as much as to make telephone calls. These changes may affect the question of what MCT charges are likely to lead to the best outcomes for consumers, and whether regulation is needed to achieve this.

Responding to a changing market, European regulators have been debating the merits of different approaches to regulating MCT charges. The European Commission (EC) has issued a Recommendation, which sets out its views about how national regulators, including Ofcom, should approach these questions. We assess the approach set out by the EC in its Recommendation in section 6. At this stage however, we think it worthwhile to consider the merits of alternative approaches (in terms of the impact on consumers), also, as part of the wider policy debate.

The focus of this preliminary consultation is on whether to regulate prices and, if so, how. It does not, at this stage, consider what the regulated prices might be, or attempt to decide the best approach.

Main documents

Supporting documents

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Responder name Type
annex1.pdf (PDF File, 19.6 KB) Organisation
annex2.pdf (PDF File, 79.1 KB) Organisation
annex3.pdf (PDF File, 74.1 KB) Organisation
ASDA.pdf (PDF File, 19.7 KB) Organisation
BBBritain.pdf (PDF File, 128.2 KB) Organisation
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