The State Duma in the first reading adopted a bill on the abolition of roaming
Yesterday, State Duma deputies voted in first reading for the abolition of intranet and national roaming in Russia. According to the authors of the bill , in the case of the implementation of the proposed measures, cellular operators will lose no more than 1.5% of total revenues. The government supports this initiative.
It is worth noting that this document in the form of amendments to the Law on Communication was proposed by the head of the Just Russia faction Sergei Mironov. In case of adoption of the draft law, Article 54 “On communications” will be changed, which regulates the procedure for payment of communication services by customers of operators. In the opinion of the deputies, it is necessary to add a clause, which says about the need to pay for telephone connections between subscribers within the country at a single tariff of a telecom operator. At the same time, it does not matter in which particular region of Russia both the calling and receiving subscriber are located.
Roaming surcharge will be canceled for both directions of calls - both outgoing and incoming. True, international roaming is preserved. In fact, national roaming is called when a client of a certain operator moves around the country and when the connection is switched between different operators. At the moment, national roaming does not work only if a client of one operator connects to another company, for example, while traveling. Within one company there is also roaming, it is called intranet.
This type of roaming is provided by almost all operators of federal importance, including VimpelCom, MTS and Megafon. According to the deputies, national roaming cannot be called anything other than “archaism that currently impedes the development of the availability of communication services in the territory and is in its essence only an additional source of income for the respective communication operators”.
Deputies point out that national roaming appeared in the country during special regulation - previously, telecom operators connected customers through a single all-Russian telecom operator (Interregional Transittelecom). At present, this type of connection has practically become obsolete, it “is used in exceptional cases and is not a mass one”. Accordingly, operators have no additional costs, and their customers are not obliged to pay more for a call from another region.
In a note to the document, the authors of the bill explain that roaming brings to telecom operators no more than one and a half percent of revenue. Thus, with the abolition of national roaming companies will not incur significant losses. Also, deputies recall the experience of Europe - last year, European deputies canceled roaming in the territory of the European Union.
As mentioned above, the Russian government supported the bill. True, representatives of the state apparatus believe that changes should be made to the article of the Law “On Communications” 46, which regulates the obligations of operators. In this article, they propose to prescribe the obligation of companies to provide communication services in the territory of the entire state at equal rates, regardless of where the subscriber is located.
The first voices in support of the idea of canceling roaming in Russia appeared last year. Then a document was also proposed on the abolition of roaming between Russia and Belarus.
Last year, the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service orderedoperators of the "big four" cancel intranet and national roaming. The instructions of the FAS were not fulfilled, and the ministry initiated two anti-monopoly cases against these operators. The first is about intranet roaming and the second is about roaming nationally.
Operators had to start to negotiate - representatives of the companies began a dialogue with antimonopolschiki. Shortly thereafter, the companies changed tariffs, lowering the cost of roaming. Also, roaming rates in Crimea were reduced. As for intranet roaming, the operators provided their customers who were not in the “native” region the opportunity to receive incoming calls from subscribers in these regions.
True, the FAS did not satisfy even this, so new antimonopoly cases were initiated.
With regard to the current bill, he will need to pass a few more readings before becoming law.