TRA issues competition framework to boost competition

27 Jan 2010

The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has published new guidelines designed to foster competition between the country’s two telecoms operators, Etisalat and Du. According to the TRA’s website, the Telecommunications Competition Framework provides ‘a detailed outline benefiting consumers by promoting and protecting competition through deterring licensees from engaging in activities that may impede competition in the telecoms sector.’ Under the new framework, the regulator said it would crack down on any anticompetitive practices, adding that any complaints lodged by either company would be investigated. It could also mean that operators will be allowed to implement price changes without prior approval, a move which could lower mobile call prices and motivate companies to offer better promotions and increase competition to the benefit of consumers. Mohammed Nasser Al Ghanim, director general of the TRA, commented: ‘The framework will not only ensure that the TRA continues to foster growth and development of the telecommunication sector through the creation of sustainable, vibrant and fair competition, but will also give guidance to stakeholders operating in this sector as to what TRA considers as being acceptable competitive behavior.’ The new framework is expected to be fully implemented by the end of 2010.