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ARGENTINA | 10-04-2024 17:30

Milei decree removes price caps for Argentina's telecommunications market

Milei decree amends legislation for Internet, telephone and cable market. Move will allow de-regulation of prices in the sector, in order to "encourage competition and investment."

Following in the footsteps of changes for private healthcare providers, President Javier Milei's government is moving to deregulate Argentina's telecommunications market.

On Wednesday April 10, the La Libertad Avanza leader's government issued Decree 302/2024 releasing the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) market of price caps and controls that regulate telephone, cable television and Internet services.

“ICT Service licensees will set their prices, which must be fair and reasonable, cover operating costs and tend towards an efficient service and reasonable operating margin,” reads the text of the decree.

The decision was made via the intervention by ENACOM, as defined by the Executive Branch last January. Licensee Juan Martín Ozores is currently the body’s Comptroller. 

Milei's DNU amends Argentina Digital Law No. 27,078 and represents a step towards the de-regulation of prices in the sector, which the government said will "encourage competition and investment, and to improve the quality of the service for users across the country."

It reads: “The President, with general agreement by the ministers, hereby decrees: Article.- Article 48 of Argentine Digital Law No. 27,078, as amended, is hereby replaced by the following text: ‘ICT Service licensees shall set their prices, which must be fair and reasonable, cover operating costs and tend towards an efficient service and reasonable operating margin.'"

The decree re-affirms the classification of ICT services as essential and strategic, underlining the State’s commitment to ensure universal access to said services, despite the move to deregulate prices, which were capped by the previous administration led by former president Alberto Fernández.

Milei recently made a similar intervention into the private healthcare market. In response prices have soared, outpacing runaway inflation. Earlier this week, Economy Minister Luis Caputo expressed concern at the soaring cost of the schemes, describing it as an "attack" on the middle class.

 

– TIMES/NA

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