Trudeau Government “Going to Honour” 25% Price Cut to Cellphone Bills
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s re-election platform included a promise to lower wireless bills by 25 percent. Now, the government has reiterated this promise will take place from the moment its Industry Minister was told to do so in December, when Navdeep Bains received his mandate letter.
According to an interview with The Canadian Press, Bains said wireless price cuts will take place within two years, starting from December 2019, and also on top of any cellphone price reductions since 2016.
“It makes sense that, from our perspective, we made a commitment in the campaign and we are going to honour that,” said Bains.
The CRTC says wireless prices dropped on average about 28% from 2016 to 2018, according to its recent report released last year.
According to the Industry Minister, to foster wireless competition and lower prices, this can be achieved through the sale of wireless spectrum licenses and also supporting mobile network virtual operators (MNVOs), which would gain leasing access to incumbent networks for resale.
The CRTC has been performing a ‘comprehensive review’ of wireless services and potential wholesale MVNO access, since February 2019. A final report is expected in the coming weeks and according to The Canadian Press, Bains hopes the report “will provide Ottawa with guidelines for how MVNOs can be used to foster greater competition in the wireless market.”
Aside from the above promise to lower cellphone bills by 25%, the federal government has not released any other details on how it plans to achieve this promised price cut within two years.