Incumbents feeling liberated in major cities

6 Aug 2007

Canada’s telecoms regulator the CTRC has deregulated local residential telephony services in a number of large urban markets, following a similar move last month in smaller cities. The country’s largest wireline provider, Bell Canada, has reported that the watchdog has deregulated Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Hamilton, London (Ontario) and other markets in Ontario and Quebec, allowing the telco to set its own prices and compete more effectively with cablecos and VoIP operators. Second largest fixed line operator, Telus , said the CRTC has accepted its deregulation application for local consumer services in Vancouver and Victoria in British Columbia, Calgary and Edmonton in Alberta, and Rimouski in Quebec. Regional incumbent MTS-Allstream also announced that Winnipeg, Manitoba, has been deregulated, whilst SaskTel was reported as saying that it is happy to be taking control of its own rates in Saskatoon. The announcements follow the CRTC’s decision late last month to deregulate Fort McMurray, Alberta, where Telus is the incumbent, and parts of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, served by Bell Aliant.