Hayek committee files recommendations with communications minister

5 Oct 2011

The committee led by Amir Hayek which has been examining the Israeli telecoms sectors has submitted its report to the minister of communications Moshe Kahlon after 18 months of work, Globes Online reports. It is understood that the committee has recommended overhauling the country’s fixed line sector in order to allow full competition, with it suggesting that there should be four telecom groups operating without restriction regarding the prices at which they offer their respective services. The working group has claimed that such a structure will help reduce the cost to consumers, as operators will have to prove that its products are better than those of its rivals.

Meanwhile, the existing setup under which every ADSL or cable modem user has to pay separately for the infrastructure provider and for an internet service provider (ISP) will be discontinued, provided that the country’s two fixed network operators, incumbent Bezeq and cableco HOT Telecommunication Systems, allow rival operators to purchase infrastructure services at low enough prices to enable healthy competition. Further, government supervision of Bezeq’s prices will also be abolished so that the telco can compete on price.

It remains to be seen if the minister will accept the committee’s report in full, or whether amendments are made to the recommendations, and no timeframe has been given regarding Mr Kahlon making a decision in the matter.