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EU to put an end to mobile roaming charges next year

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Mobile-Phone-Roaming-Charges-EuropeMobile roaming charges will be effectively scrapped under proposals agreed upon by the EU last week.

As part of the effort to create a single European telecoms market, roaming charges for voice calls, texts and internet access could be completely removed by July 2014.

Last Tuesday, the group of European Commissioners voted to ensure the proposals will be in place in time for the European elections in May next year.

It is said that despite the proposals to remove roaming charges taking away up to 2 per cent of mobile operators’ revenues, they will benefit in the long run as more and more consumers will be willing to use their phones abroad.

The EU Commission are currently working towards developing a singular European telecoms market to encourage consolidation of European mobile network operators. At present, there are around 100 operators in Europe offering services across the 27 member states, meaning the investment is low and there is a lot of pressure on the networks because of rapid growth in internet traffic.

A source close to the plans said that the amount of operators “is not sustainable if we’re going to have a single market and investment. Europe has less 4G mobile broadband than Africa at the moment.

“Consolidation is not the aim. The aim is a single market, but if it means we get fewer, stronger operators, that’s good”.

The lack of roaming fees mean that officials now hope that foreign operators will be able to compete for British customers and vice-versa, as well as encouraging mergers between existing companies to improve services.