Airtel, Globacom, MTN accused of anti-competitive practices

19 Oct 2012

The Consumers Empowerment Organisation of Nigeria (CEON) has filed a formal complaint to the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) regarding alleged anti-competitive behaviour of mobile operators MTN, Globacom and Airtel. In a letter made available to local newspaper This Day, CEON requested the NCC determine if the three GSM operators were engaging in ‘concerted practices’ by collectively discriminating in the provision of access to their network infrastructure to competing mobile content service providers. ‘As a consumer advocacy group, our interest in this matter is based on our concern that such discriminatory conduct by these GSM services providers is capable of distorting competition in the mobile content application space through constraining the choice of consumers, reducing output and retarding innovation, hence we see the need for the NCC’s intervention,’ CEON said. South Africa-based MTN, local firm Globacom and India’s Airtel are the three largest mobile operators by subscribers in Nigeria, accounting for 83.5% of the market between them at the end of June 2012, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database.