Dinosaurs forget quickly FinanceAffairs.com

Dinosaurs forget quickly  FinanceAffairs.com

Discussion posts: Stein Eric Phelan, CEO of Telia Norge

It's amazing how easy it is to forget when you get older, and then arguing doesn't do you much good, as Telenor did in its article in Finansavisen on 21 February. Televerket was founded in 1855 and changed its name to Telenor in the 1990s when the monopoly on the Norwegian mobile phone market was abolished. During the entire period from 1855 until today, Televerket, which later became Telenor, was either a monopoly in the market or was regulated by the authorities because it had dominant market power which it also abused on several occasions.

The answer is the dinosaur in Fornebo itself, but it's easy to forget when you get older

It is true that Telenor wrote that Parliament, through countless parliamentary letters and cross-party agreement from the end of the 1990s until today, wanted to facilitate three national mobile networks in Norway. Because it will provide better competition, which in turn will be beneficial for Norwegian consumers and Norwegian society. But all the facts in Telenor's post stop there. As the only mobile phone company, it has consistently opposed the third network – as well as all its own regulation. Telenor even used its market power to try to stop the third network, resulting in the largest fine in Norwegian history Norwegian Competition Authority approximately NOK 800 million in 2021. In addition, they received a NOK 1.2 billion fine from European competition authorities Charged with abuse of dominant position in 2020.

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Unfortunately, Telenor has little credibility when it claims that it should regulate the Norwegian mobile market. They still have one Market share is more than 50 percent It exploits its market power for all it's worth. Norwegian mobile customers should be aware of this.

Market regulation is not about subsidies, as Telenor claims. It is about facilitating better competition for the benefit of Norwegian consumers and Norwegian society. One way to achieve this is price regulation by the dominant player in the market. If the authorities remove it, they are simultaneously saying no to improving competition on building our shared digital infrastructure and yes to raising prices for customers. One should not forget that Telenor's infrastructure has historically been funded by public funds, and hence Telenor should celebrate its ability to also derive income from this infrastructure from its competitors instead of complaining for the 30th year that it is under regulation.

Telenor is right that the Norwegian mobile market is the only market in Europe that is still regulated. The reason for this is Telenor's abuse of market power. The answer is the dinosaur in Fornebo itself, but it's easy to forget when you get older.

Stein Eric Phelan

CEO of Telia Norge

Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

"Web specialist. Lifelong zombie maven. Coffee ninja. Hipster-friendly analyst."

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