EU could delay the abolishment of roaming fees

24 September 2014 | Kavit Majithia


The end of roaming fees across the EU could be delayed after the release of a new draft proposal by regulators.

In April, EU lawmakers had voted to abolish the fees by 2016, but the new draft proposal fails to mention the date proposed by parliament - December 15 2015 - which had been set in place.

Neelie Kroes, outgoing telecoms commissioner of the EU had pioneered the end of such charges, and has been supported by a large number of MEPs across Europe.

The draft proposal does suggest there will be a gradual reduction in roaming fees, but does not commit to the end of the charges in its entirety.

Sources claim that the premise of ending roaming charges is not in question, and the European Commission says charges have been cut repeatedly since 2007.

The draft reads: “The legislative date for the introduction of ‘roam like at home’ (RLAH), subject to transitional measures and fair use limits, needs to be defined and is a significant political questions.”

European operators have relied heavily on roaming fees in recent years, and carriers have claimed the loss in revenue could be detrimental to their ability to invest in faster networks.