Group urges caution on Euro roaming rules

The trade group representing the mobile-phone industry Wednesday urged the European Commission to shelve plans for new rules on roaming charges.

The GSM Association issued a statement in London calling the proposed regulations unnecessary and potentially harmful to the industry if they cool off investor enthusiasm in the telecom sector.

"Further roaming regulation is unnecessary and could have unforeseen consequences," said Rob Conway, the association's chief executive officer.

The European Commission has proposed new rules that will reduce the roaming charges cell-phone users must pay whenever they cross Europe's many national borders. The commission's view is that the higher bills are a burden on consumers, including frequent business travelers.

The GSMA said this week in its formal response to the proposal that telecom regulations are already in place, and the commission should do a lot more groundwork before making proposals that go outside the current framework and could have a significant impact on wireless operators.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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