Cogeco Communications

Press release details


For immediate release
Cogeco Cable statement about Telecom Policy Report:
Interesting avenues that need to be further developed
Montréal, March 23, 2006 – Cogeco Cable welcomes the review process now underway for the
telecommunications regulatory framework and believes that the Report tabled yesterday by the
Policy Review Panel on the subject is an important first step in this process, which has become
necessary due to rapid change in technology and markets. The Report leaves however several
key elements still to be defined or further developed. In an environment of convergence and
bundling of all types of communications services, this review process must be extended to the
broadcasting sector, as acknowledged in the Afterword of the Report.
“The Report of the Policy Review Panel is thought-provoking. However, it does not provide the
assurance that all sectors of the information and communications technologies, in terms of both
the means of communication and access to the full range of content and services, will be
equally made subject to market forces according to the demands of Canadian consumers,” said
Yves Mayrand, Vice President, Corporate Affairs of Cogeco Cable. He added that “For us, it is
fundamentally important that market forces and the reduction of government interference should
extend not only to traditional telecommunications services such as telephony but also to the full
range of services offered by wireline and wireless networks.”
The Report contains several useful recommendations, including:
The reduction of government and regulatory interference to the fullest extent possible;
The elimination of political appeals to the Federal Cabinet concerning individual CRTC
decisions, which is presently being solicited by incumbent telephone companies to have
important CRTC decisions reversed; and
Appeals before the Federal Court of Appeal of CRTC decisions without prior leave, which
will promote primacy of law and the quality of decisions made by the regulatory body.
For Cogeco Cable, the avenues for thought initiated by the Policy Review Panel, once they are
further developed and circumscribed, could give rise to a truly competitive industry capable of
responding efficiently to all the communications needs of Canadian consumers for their greater
It is essential however that key concepts such as “significant market power”, “anti-competitive
conduct“, “guidelines for market definition” and “essential facilities“ be clearly defined in order to
evaluate the real nature and extent of the proposals made in the Report.
Also, Cogeco Cable is not convinced that it is necessary to establish several new regulatory
bodies as proposed in the Report, including a new Telecommunications Competition Tribunal.
Whatever the structure involved in ensuring an orderly transition to full-fledged competition, it is
paramount that this transition be supervised with care and vigilance so as to ensure that
sustainable competition between service suppliers will take hold in all relevant markets in the
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best interest of Canadian consumers. Furthermore, it is necessary to ensure that prejudicial
positions involving significant market power will not be maintained or reestablished in these
markets following the transition period. Clear criteria and their timely enforcement will be
required to curb quickly abuse of dominant position and anti-competitive practices.
Cogeco Cable ( is the second largest cable operator in both Ontario and
Québec, and ranks fourth in Canada in terms of the number of basic service customers served.
To provide growing profitability to its shareholders and to satisfy its customers’ varied electronic
communication needs, Cogeco Cable delivers a wide range of services at attractive prices with
great speed and reliability, invests in state-of-the-art broadband network facilities, and strives to
provide superior customer care. Through its two-way broadband cable infrastructure, Cogeco
Cable provides its residential and commercial customers with analogue and digital video and
audio services, high-speed Internet access as well as digital telephony service. The Corporation
provides about 1,409,000 revenue-generating units to approximately 1,454,000 households in
its service territory. Cogeco Cable’s subordinate voting shares are listed on the Toronto Stock
Exchange (CCA.SV).
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Information: Marie Carrier
Director, Corporate Communications
Tel.: (514) 874-2600