The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued a consultation paper to understand the market structure and competition in cable television (TV) services. Initially, through a letter dated December 12, 2021, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) had sought recommendations of TRAI on the issues related to the monopoly/market dominance in cable TV services. In response to the letter, TRAI had come out with recommendations on market and monopoly dominance in cable TV services on November 3, 2013.
But since a lot of time has passed now and the market has evolved, the MIB had asked the regulator through a letter dated February 19, 2021, to come out with a fresh set of recommendations on the same matter. Accordingly, TRAI has issued a fresh consultation paper on market structure/competition in cable TV services. The regulator has invited written comments from the stakeholders by November 22, 2021. Any counter comments can be submitted by December 6, 2021.
TRAI Seeks Views on Whether There is Sufficient Competition
Through the consultation paper, TRAI has questioned whether there is enough competition in the television distribution sector given that there are multiple options available for the users to consume content from. Further, the TRAI has asked whether there is a need to regulate the issue of monopoly/oligopoly/market dominance in cable TV services.
If there is a need, TRAI has asked what measures should be taken to address the impending issues related to the market monopoly or market dominance in the cable TV sector. Further, the regulator has sought views of the stakeholders on whether there is a barrier of entry in the Indian cable television sector.
TRAI has also raised a very important question. The regulator has asked what should be the norms of sharing infrastructure at the level of LCO (local cable operator) for enabling broadband services through the cable television infrastructure for last-mile access. TRAI wants to understand whether it would give an LCO an undue advantage over the market share of broadband in its area of operation.
There are more questions in the consultation floated by TRAI; you can check them out by going to the company’s website. TelecomTalk