Brazil government plans new rules to put mobile consumers ahead of operators’ profit

5 Sep 2012

Brazil’s Minister of Communications Paulo Bernardo has hinted at fresh regulatory changes in the country, saying the government is keen to ensure that the needs of consumers are put ahead of corporate profits for the incumbent mobile operators. Bloomberg News quotes Bernardo as saying: ‘Companies need to make sure the market grows and develops. They have to make money offering quality,’ adding that it is better to have four potentially disgruntled mobile operators than millions of unhappy customers.

Brazil’s telephone regulator Anatel, which is an independent agency of the Communications Ministry, is studying how other countries have cut interconnection fees to put together a plan for a gradual reduction, Bernardo said. Next year the government plans to begin reducing interconnection fees, which currently generate USD0.18 a minute in revenue for the four main wireless companies – Vivo Participacoes, America Movil’s Claro, Tim Participacoes (TIM Brasil) and Oi SA – each time they connect a call from a competitor’s network. Anatel officials are also working on a framework to require fixed line, wireless and cable operators to share infrastructure, said Bernardo.

Brazil