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Mobile Phones: Unfair Practices

Volume 498: debated on Monday 26 October 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with mobile telephone operators on the compatibility of their policy of mobile termination rates with fair trading practices; and if he will make a statement. (293672)

I meet regularly with all the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to discuss a range of issues, including Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs).

With the independent industry regulator Ofcom, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) is committed to reducing mobile termination rates and making the cost of calling more affordable for all consumers. MTRs are set to fall by about a quarter between 2007 and 2011. Earlier this year Ofcom undertook a further public consultation on how mobile termination rates should be set after the current pricing system ends in 2011.

A range of options, from removing them altogether to maintaining the current system and radical options in between, are being considered to ensure the best outcome is secured for consumers and a changing mobile market.