AM accuses MinTIC of hamstringing Comcel

5 Apr 2012

Mexico’s America Movil (AM) has requested that the Colombian government stop targeting its local subsidiary Comunicacion Celular (Comcel) with price controls and regulations that it claims are harmful to consumers, reports Bloomberg. With a mobile market share of 64.0% at the end of 2011, as noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Comcel has been designated by Colombia’s regulator as an operator with significant market power (SMP). As such, in September 2011, the Ministry of Information Technology and Communication (MinTIC) proposed implementing asymmetric mobile termination rates (MTRs) that would see Comcel charged more by rival cellcos for terminating calls on their networks. Further, Comcel would be forced to set prices for cross-network calls at no higher than on-net calls.

AM said that the proposed move would deliver no benefits to consumers, and suggested that it might result in more cautious investment from AM: ‘These measures affect the legal certainty that is required to make investments in a capital-intensive industry. Regulations should tend to promote competition, not competitors.’