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BT Openreach pricing changes will be enforced, says Ofcom

Other firms are preparing responses
Wed Mar 07 2012, 16:23

UK TELECOMS WATCHDOG Ofcom has finished working out what cuts BT must make to its charges to rivals for access to its high speed Openreach service.

The pricing changes were put before the European Commission last month and have been approved without any changes, allowing Ofcom to enforce the new charges.

The changes could help operators pass on savings to customers, with Ofcom now requiring BT to lower its pricing for the use of a broadband and phone line from £91.50 per year to £87.41.

The cost for a communications provider to use only a broadband line should also drop from £14.70 per year to £11.92.

A spokesperson for Ofcom added, "We hope it will lead to cheaper broadband and landline prices for consumers."

BT noted its disappointment that the pricing was approved, saying it might even go as far as appealing against the proposals.

"We continue to disagree with some of the underlying assumptions they [Ofcom] have used to determine these controls with our primary concern being that we are able to achieve a fair rate of return in order to continue our investment in the future of the UK's communications infrastructure," it said.

"Now that we have received Ofcom's final decisions, we will consider all options available to us, including appealing."

A spokesperson for Sky, one of the major users of the BT Openreach product, welcomed the pricing confirmation.

"We continue to work with Ofcom and the rest of the industry to help create the right framework to deliver more choice and quality for consumers," Sky said.

"Wholesale price reductions can assist in that process and we're considering the detail of these latest developments."

The INQUIRER also contacted Talk Talk for comment but had received no response at time of publication. µ


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