Germany’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA, also known as Bundesnetzagentur or BNetzA), has published its proposal for new mobile termination rates charged by the country’s four mobile network operators. From 1 December 2012 the watchdog suggests that the rate fall to a uniform EUR0.0185 (USD0.024) per minute from the previous fees of EUR0.0336 for Royal KPN’s local unit E-Plus and UK-based Vodafone Germany, EUR0.0338 for Telekom Deutschland (the domestic fixed and mobile arm of Deutsche Telekom) and EUR0.0339 for Spain’s Telefonica (O2). In a second step, mobile termination rates will drop further, to EUR0.0179 per minute, on 1 December 2013. The announced rate cuts are provisional and subject to a national consultation procedure, and subsequent feedback from the European Commission and regulators in other European Union member states.
Responding to the proposed rate cuts, Reuters cited a Deutsche Telekom spokesperson as saying that the decision would cost the German telecom operators about EUR500 million annually, adding that the cuts didn’t bode well for future investments in fast internet. ‘With this decision the Bundesnetzagentur follows the complete erroneous European policy of the past ten years, which has cost the European telecom sector its global leading role,’ the spokesperson said. Vodafone meanwhile said the decision will drag money away from much needed investment in faster networks.