13 Feb 2019 | 01.54 pm
Minister Orders Comreg To Monitor Enet
Concern over Enet’s pricing practices with Metropolitan Area Networks
13 Feb 2019 | 01.54 pm
Communications minister Richard Bruton has instructed telco regulator Comreg to review whether Enet is playing fair with access to state-funded Metropolitan Area Networks.
Burton (pictured) has also published a report into Enet’s pricing practices that was delivered to his department last March but kept under wraps until now.
The review, carried out by Analysys Mason consultants, examined pricing of MANs products and compliance by Enet with the key principles underlying the MANs concession agreements, which are to provide open access to the MANs on an equality of treatment, non-discriminatory and transparent basis to all service providers.
The review made a number of recommendations which are currently being implemented by Enet, Bruton added, including a reduction in the maximum annual price of dark fibre by over 50% to €2.60 per metre.
The review identified that Enet was not in compliance with the agreed Code of Practice in relation to its approach to inter-company transfer pricing. Bruton has now asked Comreg to confirm the revised inter-company transfer pricing arrangements in place are in compliance with the Code of Practice, and that the full Analysys Mason recommendations are being implemented.
The MANs programme is comprised of 88 state-owned telecoms networks which facilitate retail service providers in delivering high speed broadband services to their retail customers, without having to build their own networks.
The Times Ireland newspaper reported today that Enet has claimed it has been subjected to a campaign of innuendo and has accused members of the Dáil’s Public Accounts Committee of making “sensational accusations” against the firm. BT Ireland has raised concerns that the MANs contracts were renewed with Enet without a competitive procurement process.
Enet is a potential supplier to the consortium led by Granahan McCourt, its former owner, which is bidding for the National Broadband Plan.
In a statement in response to Bruton’s initiative, Enet declared: “After nearly 15 years operating the MANs on behalf of the state, it is right and proper that the Code of Practice and our procedures be reviewed to ensure they are still relevant for current market conditions and fit for purpose going forward. This independent report sets out four possible options. After a thorough review, their chosen option recommends ‘improved processes, procedures and checks’.
“The Analysys Mason report makes 13 recommendations in total. They are mainly administrative, internal and procedural in nature, and are helpful to us as a business as we work to continually perfect our delivery of service. We have already implemented or are working towards implementing the recommendations as put forward in the report.
“We take our obligations to the state very seriously and are looking forward to continuing our work with the DCCAE, as well as our customers, the retail service providers, to ensure the MANs operate as efficiently and transparently as possible. Our objective is to deliver the Government’s policy and, by extension, increase the take-up of a vital service that continues to benefit communities across Ireland both economically and socially.”