CRTC Mandate on Telus and Bell Lacks Sense, Says TekSavvy
Independent internet service provider (ISP) TekSavvy has voiced concerns over the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s (CRTC) recent interim wholesale internet decision made yesterday.
The ruling mandates Bell and Telus to provide wholesale access to their fibre networks in Ontario and Quebec to smaller ISPs within six months.
Although TekSavvy sees the decision as a step towards offering more competitive fibre internet services to consumers, the company has highlighted significant issues with the CRTC’s current stance.
The primary point of contention is the wholesale rates set by the CRTC, which TekSavvy argues are higher than the retail prices Bell and Telus charge their customers. This pricing structure could reduce competition and prevent consumers from seeing any substantial price relief in their telecom services.
“The large telcos are already selling fibre internet below the CRTC’s new wholesale rates. As a result, those rates make competition virtually impossible,” stated Andy Kaplan-Myrth, TekSavvy’s Vice President of Regulatory and Carrier Affairs on Tuesday. “As it stands, consumers will not benefit from meaningful price relief, despite the large telcos’ decade-long monopoly and Canada’s ongoing cost-of-living crisis.”
— bryson (@Bryson_M) November 7, 2023
Furthermore, TekSavvy points out that the decision is limited to Ontario and Quebec, excluding consumers in other regions from the benefits of increased competition. “Consumers in other regions are no less deserving of price relief and competitive choices than consumers in Ontario and Quebec,” said Peter Nowak, TekSavvy’s Vice President of Insight and Engagement. “We hope that the CRTC will act quickly to rectify the rates and expand this interim ruling to all regions.”
TekSavvy remains committed to its role as Canada’s largest independent telecom service provider and is not currently for sale, dispelling previous reports. The company is eager to collaborate with the CRTC to revise the decision and rates, aiming to provide Canadian consumers with much-needed price relief in 2024.