Mexicos cable television industry on Monday asked the government to place
restrictions on Telmex, the countrys largest fixedline phone company, before
allowing it to offer television service.
The National Cable Industry Chamber, or CANITEC, said in fullpage
advertisements published in local newspapers that Telmex, owned by billionaire
Carlos Slim, is in negotiations to change the terms of its concession to be able
to offer video as well as phone and Internet services. The three combined are
known as "triple play" services.
CANITEC said it was concerned Telmex could use its market power to become a
dominant force in the payTV market, and called on the government to declare
Telmex and Slims mobile company Telcel "dominant," which would allow for
stricter regulation of the two.
Telmex "has to be subject to regulations that promote balance and sustainable
competition," the ad said.
Several cable companies, which already had broadband Internet and TV service,
began offering phone service last year.
Under conditions placed on Telmex at that time, the phone company may not offer
video until it puts in place interconnection services and number portability
that would allow Telmex customers to keep their same numbers if they switch to a
different phone service provider. Telmex executives have said they expect to
start offering triple play this year.
Telmex spokesman Arturo Elias Ayub called the ad "ridiculous" and said the cable
industry is trying to block competition.
"Cable television companies have been regional monopolies for 40 years," Elias
Ayub said. "What they want to do is tie our hands so that there is no
Telmex dominates the fixedline telecommunications industry with more than 90
percent of the countrys lines and an important share of the broadband Internet
Mexicos cable industry comprises more than 200 companies but cable operators
enjoy regional cableTV monopolies.
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