TekSavvy is calling on the CRTC to take action to ensure that Canadians who use independent internet service providers can continue to access services amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The carrier says that under the current wholesale rate structure, independent ISPs are required to pay inflated fees to larger telecoms. It is asking the CRTC to implement emergency provisions to put in place the final rates from the CRTC’s August 2019 decision.
“The government has the solution right in front of it: the CRTC already calculated more reasonable rates in their August 2019 rate decision,” said Andy Kaplan-Myrth, the vice-president of regulatory and carrier affairs at TekSavvy, in a press release.
New wholesale rates were announced in August 2019, but following appeals from larger carriers, the federal court suspended the CRTC’s wholesale rates decision.
This new request from TekSavvy comes after MP Michelle Remple Garner recently called on the government to implement measures to address the conditions that independent ISPs are facing.
TekSavvy recently laid off 130 employees and raised its rates due to increased costs related to wholesale pricing. The carrier stated that these layoffs and price increases would have happened regardless of the COVID-19 situation.
The carrier previously told MobileSyrup that if there isn’t any “rate relief” in the form of new wholesale pricing, then further action will likely be required.
Further, TekSavvy “has asked the CRTC to investigate unilateral changes that the big Canadian carriers are making to regulated processes for ordering, service installations and repairs.”
It says that the CRTC must ensure that fairness and stability are maintained throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.