Last week the Public Utilities Commission issued its Voice over internet protocol regulatory policy and framework guidelines. In that paper the P-U-C categorized the types of VOIP communications that would need License. Today we spoke with BTL Executive Committee Chairman Dean Boyce who says BTL got the paper the same time as everyone else and is taking its time to analyze the paper presented by the P-U-C.
Dean Boyce, Chairman of Executive Committee, BTL.
“Most people are really missing the point entirely. It is not a question of technologies. BTL has been using internet protocol for carrying voice traffic both domestic and international for some time. The issue is solely one of price and traditionally BTL has been following government policy over many years in charging more for international as the underlying cost would justify and subsidizing some of the services in some locations and for some customer groups. Although international rates have come down, we’ve grown the market significantly over the last few years. It was only about four – five years ago where there was only the basic analog system, there was twenty five thousand customers. Now there is a hundred and twenty thousand cellular customers. The internet was at one time dial-up and was very slow and very highly priced and you had to pay for your usage on a permanent basis. Now it’s a flat fee and you choose the speed you want. It has changed enormously but over that time the balance between domestic profitability and international profitability has remained the same. We make all out profit from international and we loose money on domestic. Somebody needs to deal with that of an issue. If somebody said to us that all we need to do is to provide international service then we could charge extremely low international rates. but the problem we’ve got is if we do that then you have some increase in usage but nothing like as much you would need to cove the loses you then make.”