Single set of wireless regulations better for consumers: Telecom association

Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC, speaks at their headquarters in Gatineau, Quebec on...

Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC, speaks at their headquarters in Gatineau, Quebec on October 18, 2012. (ERROL MCGIHON/QMI Agency)

Charles-Antoine Gagnon, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:16 PM ET

GATINEAU, Que. - The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) asked the CRTC Monday to establish a single set of federal wireless regulations that would supercede the existing provincial consumer-protection legislation.

But Quebecor Media's position on this issue differs from that of CWTA.

Speaking on Monday at the first day of CRTC hearings on the creation of new national standards to govern Canada's wireless industry, CWTA president Bernard Lord said that developing a new set of national regulations that would co-exist with the existing provincial rules would not give consumers more clarity about their rights and obligations.

The CRTC has proposed a national wireless code that would coexist with any existing provincial legislation.

In written comments submitted to the CRTC, Quebecor Media, on behalf of Videotron, said the CRTC's proposed wireless code is a flexible one that would make it possible for two separate sets of standards to coexist effectively.

The draft wireless code contains a provision that would allow cellphone users to unlock their devices after 30 days of service, but CWTA argued that locking devices is one of the reasons that telecommunications companies are able to offer consumers smartphones with little or no cost up front.

CWTA also opposes the elimination of three-year contracts with wireless providers.


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