Fine Gael TD for Dublin North West, Noel Rock has today (Friday) called on the Irish Commission for Communications Regulation, ComReg, to investigate Irish mobile phone providers after it was reported that they could breach EU law if they exploit a loophole in new legislation which will give consumers the ability to use their mobile devices, within other EU countries, at domestic rates.

Speaking on the development, Deputy Rock said; “I am concerned that a number of Irish mobile phone operators are altering existing contracts with customers, exploiting a loophole in the EU “Roam Like at Home” legislation, which is due to be implemented in June. The loophole will allow operators to impose high roaming charges by modifying consumers’ contracts by ensuring that offers such as unlimited data are described as a service benefit rather than a central part of a contract. This is completely anti-consumer.”

“As ComReg is the statutorily independent regulatory authority for Telecoms, I would hope they will investigate this as a matter of urgency in an effort to ensure that consumers are protected when this legislation is implemented in the summer. It is vital that consumers are aware of the implications of the modifications to their contracts,” continued Deputy Rock.

“Finally, I would call on the European Union to also look into this matter and ensure that any loopholes are closed before the legislation is brought into play in the summer. I know that this is something consumers in Ireland and across EU Member States have wanted to see for a long time. We need to make sure they reap the benefits and don’t have the wool pulled over their eyes by mobile operators who don’t have their best interests at heart,” concluded Deputy Rock.