EU denies reports that it could 'scrap' roaming cut plan

2 Sep 2013

The European Commission (EC) has reiterated plans to continue reducing international mobile roaming rates across the European Union (EU), denying a recent report from Reuters suggesting that the strategy had been shelved, writes ITPro. A claim that Neelie Kroes, VP of the EC, was planning a ‘u-turn’ on proposals to continue slashing roaming charges down to negligible levels – following lobbying from operators – has been called ‘incorrect’ by a Commission spokesperson, who stated: ‘We are still planning to end roaming [charges]. The plan will be published on 11 September in the State of the Union speech of European Commission President Barroso.’ European roaming caps were imposed from 1 July 2013 (voice EUR0.24 [USD0.32] per minute and data EUR0.45 per MB, down by 12.5% and 36% respectively compared to a year earlier), and Kroes is reportedly aiming to further reduce maximum rates (to EUR0.03 for calls and EUR0.015 per MB) in phases between July 2014 and June 2022. The Reuters report had said that these caps were apparently missing from the latest draft version of Kroes’ report.