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Oftel backs down in BT Cellnet case

Wrong end of stick

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Four months after ruling that BT Cellnet was guilty of unfair cross-subsidy, Oftel has changed its mind.

Apparently, new figures from BT Cellnet show the mobile operator was doing nothing wrong.

In a statement issued today the regulator said: "As a result of the information originally received from BT Cellnet, Oftel issued a draft direction in July to require BT Cellnet to stop any unfair cross-subsidy of its own mobile phone service providers.

"The revised information means that Oftel will not be confirming this draft direction."

Despite finding no evidence of any wrongdoing, it appears that David Edmonds, head of Oftel, still has his suspicions.

He said: "Oftel will continue to monitor BT Cellnet's quarterly returns and will take action if there is any evidence of unfair cross-subsidy."

Not a hint of an apology, there.

Still, perhaps Oftel with have more joy with its investigation into alleged anti-competitive behaviour by BT's new unmetered Net access products. Then again... ®

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