Mobile phone bills will soar



No-Deal Brexit Fear-Checker, No. 1


IEA publishes an alternative history of socialism

No-Deal Brexit Fear-Checker, No. 2
This briefing on roaming charges argues that this problem is hugely exaggerated. But it also sets out two options for the Government to prevent consumers facing higher phone bills in a no-deal scenario.

Solutions include:

• Replicate the existing arrangements by retaining restrictions on retail roaming charges in UK law unilaterally. This could be overseen by Ofcom.

• Alternatively, and preferably, they could let market forces do their job. There is now a much weaker case for state intervention in capping mobile phone tariffs. Consumers have alternative options with increased access to wi-fi and they can compare prices of different providers more easily putting those who introduce retail roaming charges at a competitive disadvantage. Given these developments, roaming charges have tumbled worldwide.

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Julian Jessop is an independent economist with over thirty years of experience gained in the public sector, City and consultancy, including senior positions at HM Treasury, HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank and Capital Economics. He was Chief Economist and Head of the Brexit Unit at the IEA until December 2018 and continues to support our work, especially schools outreach, on a pro bono basis.