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Lusa - Business News - Portugal: Telecoms prices rose more, are higher than in EU as whole - regulator

Lisbon, Feb.27,2020 (Lusa)-The price of telecommunications in Portugal "is increasing more and are more expensive" than in the European Union as a whole, according to an analysis on the subject released on Thursday by the national regulator for the sector, Anacom.
"Between 2009 and 2019, telecommunication prices in Portugal increased 7.6%, while in the European Union they decreased 9.9%," reads a statement released by Anacom on the analysis of the Portuguese market in the form of answers to nine questions.
"The difference narrowed in 2019 due to the coming into force of the European [Union] regulation that reduced prices for intra-EU calls," it went on, adding that “according to international comparison studies of telecommunications prices carried out by independent institutions (European Commission, OECD, ITU), the prices of mobile services, individual internet services and packages of services for lower levels of use are above the average for the countries considered.”
Anacom gives examples, citing the most recent comparison studies carried out by the European Commission in 2018 and 2019, noting that "prices for 'single-play' landline broadband offers in Portugal were 9.3% and 28.7% higher than the EU28 average, with the exception of speeds above 1 Gbps, where prices in Portugal were 16.9% below the average.”
These latter prices, it notes, represent just 1.6% of internet access in Portugal.
As regards mobile voice services and data packages on mobile phones, Portugal had prices that were between 19% and 98% higher than the average for the EU’s then 2018 members.
“More than three quarters of European countries have lower prices than Portugal,” it states.
Where mobile broadband is concerned, Portugal is also among countries where prices are highest.
"It should be noted that in price comparisons of more recent prices carried out by the European Commission the position regarding Portugal has improved compared to previous years,” Anacom notes. This, it went on, was as larger providers made available certain offers between mid-2018 and the end of the third quarter of 2019 – some of which have however since been discontinued.
The regulator also mentions that “the main electronic communications providers (Meo, NOS and Vodafone) increased monthly fees and other tariff elements for residential telecommunications services in Portugal between 2009 and 2016, normally at the beginning of each year” and that “in this period prices (...) grew by 12.4%”.
From 2017 onwards increases were implemented only by some providers and only for existing contracts, Anacom notes; there were no significant changes in advertised prices for new customers.
"In 2020, Meo and NOS announced a new 'price adjustment' of 1%, higher than the inflation of the previous year (0.3%)," it says. "Consumers faced these increases, especially when they tried to renew their contract at the end of the loyalty period and were not able to keep previously contracted conditions at the original price."
The regulator recognises that even though prices go up, revenues are going down.
"The changes in consumption patterns observed in Portugal in recent years have contributed to reductions in revenues despite price increases,” it states. “This is proven both by the statistics collected by Anacom (...) and by the providers themselves in their reports and accounts.”


Agency : LUSA

Date : 2020-02-28 09:08:00


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