Over 40,000 support MTR cuts


Three and BT have claimed that over 40,000 consumers have written to Ofcom to voice their support for reducing mobile termination rates (MTRs) in the UK.

The support came as the Terminate the Rate campaign asked supporters to respond to Ofcom’s consultation on the future of MTRs, which closed this week. MTRs cost around 4.3p per minute when calling a mobile phone from a landline or from a mobile phone on a different network.

Ofcom launched a review into the level of MTRs in May 2009 and in the latest stage of the process which started this April, recommended that they should be reduced to 0.5p over the next four years.

Memebers of the public responding to the latest stage joined those that had supported reduced MTRs through the Terminate the Rate campaign. The two companies claim that over the course of Ofcom’s review, more than 65 organisations including major businesses, charities, membership groups and 40 local government campaigns have joined the campaign. They also claim that 262 MPs signed an early day motion and more than 150,000 individuals signed a petition calling on Ofcom to reduce MTRs.

BT Retail consumer managing director John Petter said: “We believe that this is one of the largest responses ever seen to an Ofcom telecoms consultation and it shows that Ofcom is on the side of consumers with its recommendation to reduce mobile termination rates.

“There are still who are still arguing to keep MTRs high out of narrow self-interest, but the breadth and weight of support that Ofcom has seen for its position must now hasten the end of the UK’s high mobile termination rate regime.”

Thtee UK chief executive Kevin Russell said: “Ofcom’s proposal gives a clear direction that will open up competition and deliver far better value for all consumers. The Terminate the Rate campaign has demonstrated the breadth of the support for change and that action is long overdue.”