Slow Progress On Roaming Charges

SNP MEP Alyn Smith has today (Tuesday) welcomed a vote in the European Parliament on mobile phone roaming rates, though has asserted that a better deal could have been achieved for customers.

The European Parliament Industry Committee (ITRE), of which Alyn is the only Scottish member, voted for steeper cuts to mobile phone roaming charges, though at a relatively modest decrease.

The changes should see the cost of making a call drop this year from around 30p/min to 21p/min and the cost of sending a text will fall to 7p. Further changes will follow, with the cost of making a call set to fall as low as 13p/min by 2014.

Alyn said:

"We are stepping in the right direction, though it is slow progress - the reduction to 21p/min is a considerable cut which should be welcomed.

"I first called for a clampdown on mobile phone roaming charges back in 2006, and this is now the third round of roaming regulation from the EU. At least the movement is in the right direction.

"A reduction in roaming costs will bring instant benefits to Scots holidaymakers and business travellers alike. Consumers will save an estimated 5 billion Euros a year, leaving more holiday money in peoples' back pockets.

"I will be following this legislation as it continues at EU level, and will continue to campaign for an end to unfair roaming charges."