EU Addresses Mobile Roaming

Commissioner Reding outlines proposal for an EU regulation to bring down prices for international mobile roaming

March 29, 2006

1 Min Read

BRUSSELS, Belgium -- Excessive charges for using your mobile phone abroad could soon belong to the past. The European Commission’s updated website of international roaming charges, unveiled today, adds further weight to its proposal to bring down these charges by means of an EU regulation. The updated website clearly shows that the price for a standard four-minute call has generally remained at the same high level across Europe since September 2005 (see IP/05/1217), and in some cases has even increased, despite warnings from the Commission to the industry that EU-wide regulation would be necessary if prices were not brought down.

“It is high time that the EU’s internal market delivered substantially lower communication charges for consumers and business people traveling abroad”, said Information Society and Media Commissioner Viviane Reding. “I therefore propose that an EU regulation be used to eliminate all unjustified roaming charges. A mobile phone customer should not be charged a higher tariff just because he is travelling abroad.”

“We strongly support Commissioner Reding’s commitment to address this enduring problem”, added Kip Meek, Chief Policy Partner at Ofcom, the UK telecom regulator, who is currently also President of the European Regulators Group (ERG), the body which brings together the EU’s 25 national telecom regulators and advises the Commission. “The ERG is very committed to working together with Commissioner Reding to come up with a practical, proportionate and speedy mechanism for getting retail roaming prices down by a substantial margin.”

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