In order to comply with the provisions of Decree-Law no. 66/2021 of 30 Julyhttps://www.anacom.pt/render.jsp?contentId=1687781 and contributing to implementation of a social tariff for the provision of broadband Internet access services in Portugal, on 12 August 2021, ANACOM approved a proposal relating to the value of the social tariff for access to broadband Internet services (fixed and mobile) which will be presented to the Government. Likewise, ANACOM approved a draft decision on the definition of the bandwidth (download speed) required for provision of the broadband Internet access service, as set out in this law, and the minimum quality of service parameters to be observed. ANACOM also approved a draft decision on the concept of unfair burden in provision of the broadband Internet access service.
The social Internet tariff will be offered by all companies providing this type of service. It will be available to consumers on low incomes and to those with special social needs, with the aim of mitigating the high price of access as a barrier to use of the broadband Internet access service and promoting use of the service.
In this context, ANACOM proposes:
- the application of a monthly fee of 5 euros (6.15 euros including 23% VAT) for the broadband Internet access service, considering that this value meets the objective of guaranteeing affordability for consumers on low incomes and for those with special social needs;
- setting a maximum price of 21.45 euros (26.38 euros with 23% VAT) for activating the service and/or access equipment (e.g. routers).
In order to comply with the obligation to define the bandwidth required for the provision of broadband Internet access services in accordance with the above, as well as the minimum quality of service parameters, including download and upload speeds, the draft decision approved by ANACOM determines that:
- providers must ensure a minimum download speed of 10 Mbps and a minimum upload speed of 1 Mbps, in order to ensure provision of the set of services to be supported by the Internet access service;
- the offer associated with the social tariff for broadband Internet access must include a minimum amount of monthly traffic (12 GB).
As regards the definition of the concept of unfair burden and the specification of the conditions constituting unfair burden, i.e. the cases in which it is shown that the obligations imposed can only be undertaken at a loss or at a net cost that exceeds normal commercial conditions (determining application of net cost financing mechanisms), the draft decision approved by ANACOM sets out:
- that provision of the broadband internet access service constitutes an unfair burden where it is ascertained that the net costs incurred providing this service are equal to or greater than 3% of respective revenues, unless it is demonstrated that the company's competitive capacity is affected at a level of costs below this threshold;
- that this shall be evaluated take place on an annual basis.
ANACOM decided to submit these two draft decisions, along with the proposed value of the social tariff for broadband Internet access, to public consultation for a period of 20 working days. As such, comments (in writing and in Portuguese) are to be received no later than 10 September 2021 and should be sent by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org (draft decision on definition of bandwidth), email@example.com (draft decision on the concept of unfair burden) and firstname.lastname@example.org (consultation on the value of the social tariff). These draft decisions were also submitted to the prior hearing of interested parties for an equal period of 20 working days.
Once the consultation process has been concluded, the contributions received will be made public. Therefore, for the purposes of publication on this website, interested parties should also submit a non-confidential version of their responses excluding items considered confidential.
- Consultation on the definition of bandwidth and other quality of service parameters to be observed in the social tariff for fixed and mobile broadband Internet access services https://www.anacom.pt/render.jsp?contentId=1698513
- Consultation on the value of the social tariff for the provision of broadband Internet access services https://www.anacom.pt/render.jsp?contentId=1699424
- Consultation on the concept of unfair burden in the provision of broadband Internet access services https://www.anacom.pt/render.jsp?contentId=1699432