MTN Ghana seeks judicial review of SMP declaration

MTN Ghana has initiated a move to seek judicial review of the National Communications Authority (NCA)’s decision to declare MTN as a Significant Market Power (SMP).

A statement issued by MTN Ghana in Accra on Friday and signed by its Chief Executive Officer, Selorm Adadevoh, said the manner of the recent declaration of MTN as SMP raises concerns about clear procedural breaches.

“As such, MTN Ghana has after much consultation, and as a last resort, made the difficult decision to resort to the law courts for redress in the form of a judicial review of NCA’s decision, to ensure the observance of the requirements of procedural fairness,” it said.

Earlier this month, the government, in its quest to ensure “proper and healthy competition” in the telecommunication sector, directed the NCA to enforce the provisions of the Electronic Communications (EC) Act 2008 and the National Telecommunications Policy to address glaring disparities in market share and revenue share in the sector.”

According to the government the growing dominance of MTN “has impacted negatively on competition and consumer choice, necessitating corrective action.”

The statement said MTN Ghana was formally notified on June 9, 2020 of the NCA’s decision to declare the company as SMP.

It said the regulatory restrictions by the NCA would potentially limit MTN Ghana’s growth, performance, innovativeness and competitiveness in the telecoms market.

It said following the NCA’s declaration, MTN Ghana refrained from publicly commenting on the matter and engaged in dialogue with the regulatory authority and other stakeholders “to share our views on the matter.”

However, it said while the engagements had been largely encouraging, the NCA continued with implementation of the specified interventions.

The statement said MTN Ghana was not opposed to steps by the regulator to enhance further the highly competitive Ghana telecoms industry and was indeed prepared to support the regulator to that end.

It said MTN Ghana acknowledged the NCA’s duty and powers to promote fair competition amongst licensed operators in Ghana’s telecommunications sector within the relevant laws of Ghana and acceptable global industry best practices.

“However, we believe that the regulatory authority must follow the applicable legislations and global industry best practices. As a responsible and ethical leader, MTN is neither aware of any industry economics/market study to establish market failure nor has MTN taken any steps or engaged in anti-competitive behaviour,” the statements said.


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