Commission supports Italy's lower termination rates

The European Commission welcomed efforts by the Italian telecoms regulator to lower termination rates of alternative fixed network operators, a Xinhua News report said. The Commissionas said it agreed with the Italian regulator's proposal for a cost-orientated approach leading to a symmetric termination rate of €0.57 per minute for all fixed network operators by 1 July, 2010.

Alternative fixed network operators' termination rates describe the wholesale rates operators charge each other for connecting calls from another network. Until now, they have been high in Italy with the cost ultimately met by consumers.

Under EU rules, national telecoms regulators can impose divergent termination rates temporarily as an instrument to promote competition and encourage investments by new market entrants. The EU is, however, concerned that they can distort competition between operators from different member states.