Canada opens up wholesale fibre access

31 August 2017 | Natalie Bannerman


Canadian regulator announces plans to make wholesale services including fibre access available to competitors.

Judith LaRocque 160 x 186The move comes following on from an announcement the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) made in 2015, forcing Canada’s largest operators open up their fibre networks to smaller competitors.

The regulator says that it wants to increase competition in the Canadian market, by expanding the choice consumers have in internet services and at competitive prices.

Judith LaRocque, chairperson and CEO of the CRTC, said: “Today, the CRTC is fostering a more dynamic competitive telecommunications market by ensuring competitors have access to the wholesale services they need at reasonable prices. This decision, along with multiple decisions rendered by the CRTC in recent years, continue to help ensure a healthy wholesale market, which is crucial to providing Canadians with choice.”

Though a review to determine final rates of wholesale services are still ongoing, providers in Ontario and Quebec now have access to new services based on a new architecture. The CRTC has made these services available under interim rates, until the review is completed.

The scope of the new wholesale services architecture are as follows:
• competitors will have wholesale high-speed access to provide retail services including internet access, television and telephone services;
• the new architecture will take place in phases, starting in Ontario and Quebec where the competitor demand is largest; and
• the CRTC has adjusted the proposed rates consistent with previous determinations and the transition to the new architecture in other regions of Canada will be announced at a later date.