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TRA pushes Batelco on lower broadband prices

Bahrain regulator issues draft order to operator in bid to reduce costs to customer.

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) on Wednesday issued a draft order to Batelco in a effort to cut the cost of brandband in the kingdom.

The TRA's move paves the way for Batelco to reduce its retail prices and introduce new higher speed services, the regulator said in a statement.

Alan Horne, TRA general director said: "TRA remains determined to ensure that broadband prices in Bahrain are reduced to be more in line with the prices for similar services offered through out the region and to ensure there are no further delays in making available higher internet speeds at competitive prices on fair and reasonable terms.

"We are also determined to ensure that fair and sustainable competition develops which in turn will ensure that consumers have choice at competitive rates."

TRA has indicated that even with the current proposed retail prices from Batelco, their broadband prices remain higher than the Arab average.

Horne added: "TRA is disappointed we have had to resort to using regulatory orders to ensure that Batelco fulfils its regulatory duties and stop Batelco from delaying and distorting the development of competition in this market.

"By issuing this draft order, TRA has compelled Batelco to fulfil the conditions TRA placed on the approval of Batelco's request to reduce retail prices and launch higher speed retail services".

Batelco has 30 days to comment on the draft document before TRA issues the Final Order which is expected to be before the end of May.

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