Controversy as telecom regulator says “prices in Portugal must come down”

Telecommunications companies heard this week that their prices are ‘much too high’.

President of Anacom João Cadete de Matos delivered the verdict at a conference in Lisbon (click here) prompting a certain degree of outrage.

He said: “Along with improvement to services provided, Anacom considers it essential that prices for telecommunications and access to the internet reduce. It’s time to stop with the disparity compared to other countries of the European Union”.

According to Cadete de Matos, prices in Portugal have grown “around 12% in the last decade. A tendency that goes against the average reduction of 9% registered in other European markets”.

His affirmations riled operators Nos, Altice and Vodafone.

“If we were in a shadow government, I would be the minister of indignation”, NOS’ juridical director Filipa Carvalho retorted, suggesting Anacom was “not looking at the reality of the facts”.

It hasn’t helped that Apritel, the association of Portuguese telecom operators, recently delivered a study that concluded that ‘only the French pay less for electronic communications”.

Explain reports, the study “only compared a group of 10 countries within the EU where telecoms market is identical to Portugals”.

In other words, Cadete de Matos’ overview is more wide-reaching.

He told the congress that Portugal will only be truly able to embrace the digital revolution if provided coverage consistently. With the 5G ‘revolution’ at the door, he stressed there are still areas of the country not even covered by mobile networks. The proof of this, he added, are “complaints by large sections of the population and mayors”.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com