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Telecoms Watchdog Says Swisscom Overcharged Rivals

Switzerland’s Federal Communications Commission (ComCom) has retroactively cut some regulated prices that Swisscom charges rivals, the agency said after concluding that some of its prices were too high.

“Responding to requests from Sunrise and Salt, the Federal Communications Commission has reviewed the prices charged for the regulated telecoms services offered by Swisscom. In many cases, these prices have been reduced with retroactive effect for the 2013–2016 period,” it said in a statement.

The regulator made the move after calculating prices for the first time on the basis of modern fiber-optic technology rather than conventional copper cabling as in the past.

Swisscom said it was considering whether to file an appeal with the federal administrative court. The government-controlled telecommunications company said it had already built financial reserves for the case and reaffirmed its 2019 outlook.

Its shares nevertheless turned negative after the news and were down 0.4 percent by 0835 GMT.

ComCom determined that rates for unbundled copper subscriber lines should have been some 10–25 percent lower than those offered by Swisscom, while rates for carrier line services were to be reduced by between 65 and 80 percent.

The regulator saw no problem with cable duct prices but lowered average costs for network interconnection by around 10 percent.

Swisscom took issue with some of ComCom’s conclusions. “It is only the reductions for leased lines of between 65 percent and 80 percent that Swisscom finds difficult to comprehend,” the company said.―Reuters

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