SK Telecom draws fine for restrictive practices

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SK Telecom draws fine for restrictive practices

SK Telecom Co., Korea’s top mobile phone operator, has been fined 1.5 billion won ($1.4 million) for restricting Internet portal companies’ access to its wireless network, the government said yesterday. Internet portal companies have long demanded that SK Telecom and two other cellular phone operators ― KTF Co. and LG Telecom Inc. ― open their wireless networks to competitors. Most of Korea’s more than 34 million mobile phone subscribers have Internet-capable cellular phones. The government has ordered mobile phone operators to “fairly” open their wireless networks to Internet portals and other companies, but some unfair practices remain, according to a statement from the Ministry of Information and Communication. For example, SK Telecom offers favorable treatment to subscribers to its own Internet portal, the ministry said. The ministry also reprimanded KTF and LG Telecom but did not impose fines, saying their levels of unfairness were negligible.

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