According to a recent submission from Shaw to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), the Western Canadian telco wants its latest gigabit internet offering to be exempt from mandated rates to internet resellers.
The Globe and Mail reports Shaw sent a submission to the CRTC last Wednesday, the same day it launched its new Fibre+ Gigabit plans for home customers.
The CRTC mandates telecoms to sell wholesale internet at established rates to resellers such as TekSavvy for example. However, Shaw wants to be able to sell its gigabit offering at “mutually beneficial rates” and be exempt from CRTC mandated rates, until the Commission completes its review process.
Shaw is arguing its Internet and phone competitors using fibre optic, such as Telus and Bell, do not face the same requirements as cable companies such as itself.
If Shaw has to charge mandated rates, it could be “irreparably harmed,” and possibly affect affordability for consumers in the long run.
The chief executive of Distributel Communications and chairman of the Canadian Network Operators Consortium, Matt Stein, called Shaw’s move as trying to minimize competition.
“This is their newest argument about why they should not be forced to allow competitive ISPs access to their networks,” said Stein to the Globe.
A Shaw spokesperson said the company’s application “will increase customer choice and provide Shaw with the ability to negotiate wholesale access to 1 gig – something our telco competitors can already do with their 1-gig offers.”
In the meantime, the CRTC did not approve interim relief for Shaw as it considers the submission, which means mandated wholesale internet rates will still apply.
Shaw’s fastest Fibre+ Gig plan is available at $115/month with up to 1 Gbps download and up to 25 Mbps upload with unlimited data on a two-year term.