10 Aug 2005

Fiji commerce commission critical of telephone companies

5:56 pm on 10 August 2005

Fiji's Commerce Commission has castigated the country's monopoly telephone companies for charging excessively high prices, very much more than the efficient cost of the provision of services.

The Commerce Commission chairman, Thomas Raju, made the comment when handing down a sharply reduced draft determination of new charges except for landline rentals which will go up.

Mr Raju said monopoly rents have been dissipated in inefficiency or to benefit shareholders.

He has urged the government to consider the introduction of a regulatory framework for universal service obligation charges.

Mr Raju says this together with efficient, affordable, and accessible telecommunications services should enhance economic development, investment and improved living standards for the people of Fiji.