Batelco pleased with regulatory leeway on international wholesale services

12 Mar 2013

The CEO of the domestic division of Bahrain Telecommunications Company (Batelco), Rashid Abdulla, said the telco is ‘very pleased’ with the latest ruling from the country’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) which found that Batelco is no longer a dominant operator in the supply of wholesale international services. Removing the significant market power (SMP) status means that Batelco’s wholesale rates are no longer subject to ‘ex ante’ regulatory measures such as remedies/obligations based on market dominance applied to services/tariffs before they are launched commercially, although ‘ex post’ (retrospective) remedies for anti-competitive practices may still be applied after rates are published, notes TeleGeography. Responding to a query from Gulf Daily News, the Batelco Bahrain executive said, ‘We appreciate the efforts of the TRA and support their aims to deliver world-class products and services at competitive prices for the Bahrain market.’ The sector watchdog noted that the decision marked the first time a Bahraini operator previously holding a dominant position in a wholesale market had been found not to be dominant.