Denmark warned by Commission over SMS rates

14.02.2012 - 11:40

The European Commission has written to the Danish telecoms regulator Danish Business Authority (DBA) to express its serious doubts about the compatibility with EU law of DBA's proposed regulation of SMS termination rates, the rates that mobile networks charge each other to deliver SMS between networks.

DBA's proposal concerns the text messages sent to customers of the mobile virtual network operator Lycamobile (terminated on Lycamobile's network), which entered the Danish market in the first half of 2010.

The Commission is concerned that the price control DBA proposes might be discriminatory as it treats differently SMS coming from operators providing telecommunication services in Denmark. Such SMS are subject to (lower) price caps while SMS coming from operators providing telecommunication services in other member states, are not regulated.

Under the new powers of Article 7a of the Framework Directive, the Commission, in close cooperation with BEREC will, over the next three months, discuss with DBA how to amend its proposal in order to make it compliant with EU law and to eliminate those barriers within the Single Market which the proposed measure would create.

Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "While I agree with DBA's proposal to regulate the rates of SMS terminating on Danish networks with significant market power, such regulation must apply without discrimination on the basis of the origin of the SMS within the EU. Any national price regulation must be compatible with Single Market rules".