Telecommunications: Competition

Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 29th February 2012.

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Photo of Helen Goodman Helen Goodman Shadow Minister (Culture, Media and Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the effect of his proposed amendments to the telecoms appeals framework on (a) the number of appeals submitted, (b) the average length of an appeal and (c) the average cost of an appeal.

Photo of Ed Vaizey Ed Vaizey The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

As noted in the Department for Culture, Media and Sport's recent consultation on telecoms appeals there was no intention for the proposals to result in fewer appeals as there was no intention to restrict the right of appeal for telecoms providers. While no assessment has been made on the average length of appeals the consultation did note that the time spent by Ofcom in defending appeals was 11,500 staff hours in the financial year 2009-10 and 9,000 hours from April 2011 to January 2012. The average costs of appeals to industry are not known as such costs are confidential to appellants, however anecdotal evidence suggests that such costs can range from £100,000 to millions of pounds. The consultation noted that the costs of appeals to Ofcom were more than £2 million in 2010-11.

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