HomeInsightsGovernment publishes draft Trade (Mobile Roaming) Regulations 2023

The purpose of the draft legislation is to regulate international mobile roaming wholesale charges between the UK and Norway, and the UK and Iceland. It meets the obligations that the UK signed up to in the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein on 8 July 2021. Due to its operators’ commercial relationships with Switzerland, Liechtenstein opted out of this aspect of the FTA.

The Government explains that wholesale charges are the fees mobile operators charge each other when a customer travels to another country and uses the mobile network of an operator based in that territory. Retail charges are the fees they charge their customers. The 2023 Regulations will introduce a cap on the wholesale element only. The Government explains that the focus on wholesale is because it is a cross-border international issue, whereas operators’ retail charges are a domestic matter.

The second purpose of the legislation is to grant Ofcom powers to enforce these caps on wholesale mobile roaming charges. To access the draft legislation, click here.