Japan’s FTC plans to investigate MNO pricing and sales practices

Telegeography’s CommsUpdate: Japan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) plans to conduct an investigation into the pricing models and sales practices employed by the country’s mobile network operators (MNOs) in a bid to foster market competition, as part of a plan by the new prime minister, Yoshihide Suga, to drive down the cost of mobile services. When Yoshihide Suga announced his candidacy to succeed Shinzo Abe following the latter’s resignation on health grounds, he said: ‘I want to create a framework that allows for greater competition in the [telecoms] field’. Suga is an old hand where it comes to telecoms policy and has long trumpeted the need for lower mobile service rates. ‘Network access fees [charged to new market entrants] and the lack of the market for second-hand handsets might be hindering competition,’ he said, seemingly confirming that the FTC will look into those areas. The FTC chairman did not say when the review will begin.

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