Chatham-based TekSavvy said it had scrapped plans to offer mobile service due to yesterday’s CRTC decision to roll back wholesale internet tariffs, which it said favors major telecommunications.
TekSavvy said on Friday that it has also informed Industry, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) that it will pull out of the upcoming spectrum auction because it cuts investment for wireless offerings.
The company said the “CRTC decision is a headstone on the grave of telecommunications competition in Canada,” said Andy Kaplan-Myrth, vice president of regulatory and carrier affairs at TekSavvy, in a statement sent by email to iPhone in Canada.
“Canada’s largest and most profitable telecommunications companies have managed to play with the system with impunity. As competitors start to leave the market, Canadian consumers will pay the price, ”added Kaplan-Myrth.
The CRTC originally planned to cut wholesale Internet rates in 2019 to stimulate competition. These are the rates that small Internet service providers pay to resell services to consumers. In short, the incumbent telecoms appealed the decision and challenged it in court. The final decision came down to the CRTC, citing that it made mistakes in making the initial decision in 2019, thus reducing the tariffs to 2016.
TekSavvy said: “The move is bad news for consumers, as it effectively ensures that internet prices will continue to rise during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The boost at the CRTC is incredible. From a pro-consumer and pro-competition president in Jean-Pierre Blais to perhaps the most anti-consumer CRTC president in his history in Ian Scott. https://t.co/PrIXul2hgK
– Michael Geist (@mgeist) May 27, 2021
Distributel calls CRTC decision a “terrible day for Canadians”
Toronto-based Distributel also lambasted the CRTC’s decision on wholesale Internet tariffs, calling it “a terrible day for Canadians.”
Matt Stein, CEO of Distributel, said iPhone in Canada in a statement, “It couldn’t have come at a worse time. Affordable internet access has never been more important given the country’s economic challenges and the continuing reality for Canadians to work, learn and connect from home due to the pandemic. “
“We expected the CRTC to uphold its 2019 ruling and stand up for Canadians; Instead, today’s decision assures Canadians that their Internet prices will continue to rise, when they already pay some of the highest prices in the developed world, ”added Stein.
Distributel says CRTC decision “is not in line with the direction given to the CRTC by the Liberal government to ensure innovation and competition in telecommunications, nor with its promise to Canadians to make telecommunications services more affordable. “.