KCC, carriers agree on registration shutdown policy

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KCC, carriers agree on registration shutdown policy

The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) announced yesterday that it reached an agreement with the top three mobile carriers on a customer registration shutdown system in the event that a carrier receives an excessive number of subscribers from another company.

The so-called circuit breaker policy automatically shuts down a carrier’s customer registration system if one company gets more than 30,000 new customers per day from other companies or brings in 24,000 customers or more for two straight days. The KCC said the plan will be implemented after May 19, the last day of a ban imposed on the three carriers.

The plan was announced at a meeting hosted by newly appointed KCC chief Choi Sung-jun. It was the first meeting with the heads of the three mobile carriers since he took office last Tuesday. The heads of Korea’s top three mobile carriers - SK Telecom CEO Ha Sung-min, KT President and CEO Hwang Chang-gyu and LG U+ Vice Chairman Lee Sang-cheol - attended the meeting, where Choi emphasized that the plan would prevent mobile carriers from using subsidies to boost performance.

“The government is determined to root out illegal subsidies and thinks that competition between carriers should be based on price and service quality,” Choi said.

“Regarding illegal subsidies, the KCC will continue searching for solutions strictly based on the law,” he said. “Some measures could be painful for the companies, but they are aimed at stabilizing the market.”

The plan is not a new idea. Former KCC Chairman Lee Kyeong-jae devised the plan after the commission extended the companies’ operation suspension by two weeks on top of the 45 days required by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning in February.

BY KIM JI-YOON [jiyoon.kim@joongang.co.kr]

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