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    October 20

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Telecoms regulation 'unfair' says C&W Caribbean president

SHAWN CUMBERBATCH, shawncumberbatch@nationnews.com

Added 22 March 2017

flow

FLOW, Windsor Lodge. (FP)

CABLE & WIRELESS (C&W) is unhappy with how Barbados’ telecommunications sector is being regulated.

C&W Caribbean president Garry Sinclair today complained that it was “unfair” for his company to have to operate in an “anachronistic” environment under the Telecommunications Act that only regulated fixed voice services, and required C&W alone to pay a fee to the Fair Trading Commission.

Speaking at a Press conference at Flow’s Warrens office, the Jamaican executive said the law should take account of the larger and more buoyant mobile market and therefore main rival Digicel and other competitors should be similarly regulated.

Sinclair said he raised these concerns yesterday during a meeting with Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Senator Darcy Boyce and looked forward to “a more accommodating regulatory environment”.

He said C&W had invested a lot of money in its network and services in Barbados and would continue to do so, but needed a level regulatory playing field.

“One of the things we need, I believe, is a conducive regulatory environment. We met with Minister of Telecoms [Senator Darcy] Boyce yesterday and I made clear to him that the current regulatory environment, which harkens back to a monopoly age, is an anachronistic and needs to be modernised and recognise the fact that we now are in a way more competitive environment,” Sinclair said.

“And so the regulatory climate that exists today…really only sees that C&W is the entity that is regulated while our competitors are not, and the fixed voice space is regulated where our competitors are not, is making us non-competitive [and is] we believe patently unfair and in fairness the Minister of Telecoms agreed.”

He added: “Anything that we pay that our competitor is not subject to we think is unfair.” (SC)

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