Plans to undertake a market inquiry of the identified priority markets that may require regulation intervention in terms of the Electronic Communications Act will be announced in due course, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) said on Friday.
Mobile services, upstream infrastructure and wholesale fixed-access have been identified as priority markets that may be prone to regulations in future to address any potential market failures and introduce pro-competitive remedies.
This followed Friday’s publication of the findings document on the priority markets inquiry in the electronic sector as part of a three-pronged approach to reducing the high cost of communication.
A formal notice of Icasa’s intention to conduct the market inquiry, as well as announce which of the prioritised markets will be subject to a market review first and possible regulatory intervention, will be published in due course.
Icasa received eight submissions on the discussion document from interested stakeholders and conducted public hearings, and took into consideration all written and oral submissions.
Wholesale fixed-access – the provision of last mile connectivity in fixed networks – includes wholesale supply of asymmetric broadband origination, fixed-access services and relevant facilities.
Upstream infrastructure markets incorporate national transmission services and metropolitan connectivity and relevant facilities.
Mobile services includes the retail market for mobile services and the wholesale supply of mobile network services.
“The above markets were identified on the basis of the screening measures applied, which considered the likelihood of competition concerns, as well as materiality of the market to government policy objectives and consumers,” Icasa explained in the findings document.