The Government of Canada has issued the final version of a ‘policy direction’ that requires the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to ‘consider competition, affordability, consumer interests and innovation in all of its telecommunications decisions and demonstrate to Canadians that it has done so’. The directive aims to encourage all forms of competition and investment to bring down costs of internet and cellphone bills, as the government says that the prices Canadians pay for telecoms services continue to be high compared to other nations. Wireless data plans in Canadian regions with strong competition are ‘up to 32% cheaper than the national average’, according to government figures.
Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, said: ‘As long as Canadians pay too steep a price for their cellphone and internet bills, our government will take extraordinary means to continue driving down the prices of telecommunications services. We are also fostering a climate of investment and innovation for Canada’s telecom service providers to improve the quality of services.’