Democracy vs. Public Corporations

The Costa Rica state telecom company is moving away from the purpose that justifies its existence and is impeding the exercise of the popular will in terms of the cellular market opening up.

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE), after using every piece of legal chicanery imaginable to prevent the implementation of number portability, is now simply saying "I WONT SIGN", citing technical insolvency as its reason for not integrating the system that allows users to migrate from one cellular communication provider to another, while keeping their phone number.

The ICE's resistance to number portability is understandable (but not acceptable). Its cell phone users who today receive a service which is between bad and awful, would be tempted to migrate to other providers.

In the equation of the forces at play, the Government representative on the issue, the Superintendency of Telecommunications (Sutel) does not seem to have the necessary muscle as rector of Costa Rican telecommunications, according to an article in Elfinancierocr.com.

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More on this topic

Costa Rica: Cellular Market Grows 36% in Seven Months

November 2012

Since the formal break up of the monopoly held by the state communications firm, ICE, the number of allocated cell lines has grown from 3.9 to 5.3 million.

Elfinancierocr.com reports that this information was obtained "by an appeal to the Constitutional Court, which forced the Sutel to provide the number of lines that the ICE had up to November 2011, which was considered a strategic issue by the state company and the regulator.

Claro and Movistar Growing in Costa Rica

June 2012

Between the two carriers 100,000 new lines are sold a month and they already have a market share of 20%.

"At the moment, Claro and Movistar between them have a 20% market share. The growth of these companies together is about 100,000 lines per month", said George Miley, a member of the Board of the Telecommunications (Sutel), according to the information portal Signals Telecom News.

Superintendence Rejects Objections to Claro – ICE contract

October 2011

The Superintendency of Telecommunications in Costa Rica has rejected objections raised by Telefónica over an interconnection agreement between Claro and the ICE.

Overruling the complaints, the regulator has given the green light for the interconnection between the Ice and Claro.

Price Fixing in Mobile Phone Companies Prevented

September 2011

The Costa Rican regulator has prevented telephone companies Telefónica and ICE from agreeing on tariffs for end users within a contract for interconnecting their networks.

The company Claro filed a complaint to the Superindendency of Telecommunications (Sutel), which stated that the access and interconnection agreement signed between the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) and Telefónica, contained clauses where both companies agreed not to charge prices below the cost of services provided, considering the interconnection charges as a cost common to both.

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