Czech regulator drafts new competition rules after EU pushback

Czech regulator drafts new competition rules after EU pushback


Despite a setback from the EU, the Czech Telecommunication (CTU) Office is drafting new measures to spur competition and designating incumbent MNOs as having significant market power.

 Last month the EU’s executive branch the European Commission blocked the regulator’s move to force operators to give favourable wholesale prices to MVNO looking to enter the Czech market, stating this was incompatible with European law.

Regulated wholesale prices were reported to have doubled in 2020 making it near impossible for MVNOs to turn a profit. 

The CTU stated there was unfavourable conditions for new entrants to the market meaning they would not be able to produce competitive offerings. The regulator designated O2, T-Mobile and Vodafone as having significant market power (SMP),

CommsUpdate reported, under the CTU's new temporary measures operators that are SMPs will have the obligation to offer two mobile service regulatory packages in all its existing mobile network access agreements across 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G.

The CTU will also ban margin squeezing by setting a maximum wholesale price, and force operators to allow access on wholesale packages to non-discriminatory terms even when striking a deal for an MVNO play. The regulation will come in for 18 months when activated.

Chair of the CTO Council, Hana Toverkova, said prices for consumers in the country is one of the highest in Europe, calling for the regulator to be steadfast and continue to sway EU law.

“The law gives us that opportunity. The Council did not consider it justifiable to ignore it. We hope that the specific proposed regulatory packages will contribute to lower prices on the retail market,” said Toverkova.

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