1. In April 2007, we published a report on the
Commission's proposals to introduce price caps for mobile phone
voice roaming charges.
The Council and European Parliament adopted the Regulation on
mobile phone voice roaming charges in June 2007.
2. Mobile phone operators apply higher charges
per minute when a consumer makes calls from aboard. The Commission
considered the charges excessive and the Regulation was intended
to force the mobile industry to reduce them. The Regulation set
a wholesale and retail cap on these roaming charges. In September
2008, the Commission proposed amending the Regulation.
3. As part of our scrutiny of these proposals,
we decided to conduct a one-off oral evidence session with Lord
Carter of Barnes (Minister for Communications, Technology and
Broadcasting at BERR and DCMS). The hearing was conducted by Sub-Committee
B (Internal Market), whose members are listed in Appendix 1 and
a full transcript is printed with this report.
4. We make this report to the House for information.
5. The original Regulation included a sunset
clause stating that the Regulation would expire on 30 June 2010.
The proposed amendments will extend this clause to 30 June 2013.
This will involve setting new caps on retail and wholesale voice
roaming charges applicable until 2013 (see table 1).
Proposed price caps in eurocents