FCC fines America Movil over Puerto Rico ownership blunder

30 Jun 2016

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced that Puerto Rico Telephone Company (PRTC) and its parent company, America Movil (AM) of Mexico, will pay USD1.1 million to resolve an investigation by the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau. The watchdog adjudged that stock purchases of America Movil by its owner Carlos Slim Helu and his family exceeded the foreign ownership levels approved by the FCC on three separate occasions over a five-year period. Most recently, in June 2014, the Slim family increased its ownership in AM through a purchase of stock from AT&T International. This also increased the family’s ownership in FCC licensee PRTC beyond the voting and equity interests approved by the agency’s International Bureau, in accordance with the FCC’s foreign ownership rules and policies.

Enforcement Bureau Chief Travis LeBlanc commented: ‘Foreign companies doing business in the United States and its territories must follow all federal rules, including those governing their ownership of American companies … This is the largest fine for a violation of foreign ownership and control limits because of the Slim family’s repeated violations.’