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ANACOM: Telecommunications increase in Portugal and are already more expensive than in the European Union

ANACOM carried out a study to compare telecommunications prices at an international level, promoted by independent institutions, such as the European Commission, OECD and ITU, focusing on the prices of mobile services, individualized internet services and service packages for service levels. lower usage rates, concluding that they are above the average of the countries considered.

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According to studies pointed out by ANACOM, between 2018-2019 the prices of the triple play package (Internet + landline + television) were higher than the European Union average between 2% and 12.7%. The exception was the offers of 1Gbps which presented prices lower than the average of the European Union (-22.3%), but which, in total, only represent 1.6% of accesses. In the case of the Internet + fixed telephone package, the prices practiced in Portugal were above the EU28 average between 1.3% and 19.3%. The exception was offers with speeds of 1 Gbps (1.6% of total accesses), whose prices in Portugal were 20% lower than the EU28 average.

In double-play offers (Internet and television), the price of the cheapest offers in Portugal was between 22.8% and 3.5% higher than the European Union average in the 12Mbps-200Mbps intervals, and lower than the average in the remaining cases. The regulator gave even more examples of packages whose prices were higher than the EU average: the prices of fixed broadband offers in Portugal were between 9.3% and 28.7% higher than the EU average, with the exception of speeds above 1 Gbps , where prices in the country were 16.9% below the average but which, in total, only represent 1.6% of accesses.

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Regarding mobile voice and Internet packages on mobile phones, Portugal had prices between 19% and 98% higher than the average. More than three quarters of European countries have prices lower than those practiced in Portugal, says ANACOM. Finally, mobile broadband offerings for PC and Tablet, prices in Portugal are between 25% and 110% higher than the average, for all usage profiles, with the exception of offers with greater traffic volume (50 GB) where the difference is -36%.

According to the regulator, the prices practiced in Portugal are always in the second half of the cheapest prices in the EU, occupying the last places (27. and 28.), in the case of the lowest usage profiles. ANACOM states that the monthly fees of the three main operators (MEO, Vodafone and NOS) have been growing, between 2009 and 2016, corresponding to an increase in telecommunications prices of 12.4%. As of 2017, prices have been adjusted, affecting contracts signed in previous years, not involving new customers. Even so, MEO and NOS increased 1% this year.

Despite the price increases for services, ANACOM mentions that the value of revenues has fallen. And this was due to the reduction in the consumption of premium channels, changes in provider, changes in contracts for cheaper offers, among other changes in the consumption pattern, as can be seen in an example document provided.

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