New Roaming Regulations Coming Into Effect on 15 June

Total Croatia News

The new rules are part of European Union regulations.

Starting from 15 June, the new EU roaming regulations, which include the end of roaming services with different rates for mobile communication within Europe, will come into effect in Croatia. The rates will be the same as for local calls, with the possible limitation of data traffic at local prices, reports Večernji List on May 9, 2017.

The new EU roaming regulations mean that roaming prices (using telecommunication networks outside the home country) will be determined on the basis of national prices, with regards to mobile calls, text messages and data usage, while citizens travel across Europe or between EU/EEA countries (EU member states plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein), announced HAKOM (Croatian Regulatory Agency for Network Operations).

“Croatian citizens will pay roaming rates depending on the tariffs they have in Croatia, but in roaming access to the internet, in order to prevent possible abuses, there is a possibility of limiting the use of data transfers at local rates. These limits depend on the user’s tariff, and each operator is obliged to inform the user of the amount of data services which can be used in roaming before additional roaming fee kicks into effect,” explained HAKOM. This means that the cost of roaming services as of 15 June will be equal to local prices, and only in the case of data traffic, when the user exceeds a certain limit, the operator may charge an additional roaming fee in the amount of 7.7 euros per gigabyte.

Given the annual increase in the number of foreign tourists in Croatia, HAKOM expects a proportional increase in the use of roaming services in Croatia, as well as the adaptation of local operators to new circumstances. “In the mobile communication market, operators are not obliged to seek approval from HAKOM for new tariffs or options, and it is solely for them to decide how they will adapt to new circumstances. It should be borne in mind that some tourists come to Croatia from countries outside the EU, so local tariffs will certainly be interesting for them, while for EU users the interest will depend on the conditions they have in their home countries and their user habits, primarily regarding the use of the internet,” announced HAKOM.

Asked whether these changes will lead to a possible price increase, HAKOM said that the retail prices of mobile services are not regulated and each mobile operator determines them separately, in accordance with their business policy.

Although HAKOM is not yet aware of any increases in prices for local calls, it is considered possible that mobile operators might try to compensate the losses due to lower wholesale prices by increasing retail prices for local services. “In that case, Croatian users, including those who do not travel, which is the majority of them, would subsidise international roaming users who come to Croatia. Another scenario that may happen is that Croatian operators will reduce investments in the network and thus affect the future quality of services in mobile networks,” concluded HAKOM.


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