The Union of Electronic Communications Operators (Apritel) considers that “there is no point in discussing the change of the law on electronic communications”, thus reacting to Anacom’s proposal submitted to the government. The communications regulator suggested the executive a legislative amendment reducing the credit period from two years to six months.
“It makes no sense to discuss the amendment to the law on electronic communications that was approved six months ago after a long and extensive discussion with Anacom, the government and Parliament,” the union led by Pedro Mota Soares said in a statement. note sent to the press.
The operators’ association also points out that “the European Electronic Communications Code provides for 24-month loyalty rules and most countries have adopted contracts with this duration.”
“What the legislator and the Government understood as necessary to balance the duration of the contracts was to ensure situations of vulnerability. And these, after many suggestions, are all protected by law and implemented by the operators”, he concludes.
Afterwards, Pedro Mota Soares, general secretary of Apritel, warned at a press conference that the sector regulator’s proposal to reduce loyalty periods from two years to six months would have consequences: “Changing this paradigm , as is obvious, is to call into question all the investment that the industry has made and continues to make,” he added.
Anacom reinforced this Wednesday, at a press conference scheduled to announce the proposal, that the prices applied in Portugal are much higher than the European Union average. According to the chairman of the regulatory authority, João Cadete de Matos, Telecom prices in Portugal increased by 7.7% from the end of 2009 to December 2022, while in the European Union they decreased by an average of 10%.
The head of the regulatory authority also highlighted the case of Denmark, where, he guarantees, there is a rule of a maximum fidelity period of six months. “It is a good source of inspiration for what is important to do in Portugal,” he said, noting that the prices of telecommunications services in that country have fallen by 32.9% from the end of 2009 to April 2022.
The three major telecom operators – Meo, Nos and Vodafone – have announced a price hike in line with 2022 inflation, i.e. 7.8%. In the case of the first two providers, the new prices came into effect from this Wednesday. In the case of Vodafone, they apply from March 1.
In practice, the increases could weigh up to €84 a year on consumers’ wallets.