ComReg cuts cost of number portability by 90pc

2 Feb 2009

Telecoms regulator, the Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg), has reduced the wholesale price that telephone operators charge one another whenever a mobile-phone or fixed-line user wants to switch provider and keep their number.

On Friday, ComReg said the move will result in reductions of up to 90pc in relation to wholesale mobile-number porting charges, and 70pc for wholesale fixed-number porting.

Number porting (NP) allows the consumer to retain their existing fixed or mobile number when moving between network operators. There is an obligation on all network operators, both fixed and mobile, to provide number portability services.

The decision sets out that a mobile operator cannot charge in excess of €2.05 to another mobile operator when a customer moves. Similarly, a fixed operator cannot charge in excess of €4.02 to another fixed operator when a customer moves.

ComReg has also set out a number of other wholesale fixed NP charges, including a maximum charge of €3.50 for Geographic Number Portability (GNP) in the context of Unbundled Local Metallic Path (ULMP), and a maximum charge of €5.74 for Non-Geographic Number Portability (NGNP).

“The review conducted by ComReg, and the subsequent reduction in the prices of wholesale number portability charges, is part of ComReg’s overall commitment to encourage further competition in the mobile and fixed market,” commented ComReg chairman John Doherty.

By John Kennedy