The UK dealer network has never before had the opportunity to give their views or suggestions on the industry, historically Ofcom has engaged in talks with Networks but the heart of telecoms, the dealer has always been left out.
Chris Caudle chairman of the IMPDA said “This is indeed a first for the UK dealer network, for years dealers in the country have asked to be listened to and generally been ignored by networks. "
"The fact that Ofcom is now prepared to hear what dealers have to say and take on board the suggestions they give to the betterment of the consumer, and to push for change in the industry is applauded. The industry needs now more than ever to change, and the time has come for the networks to work with UK dealers and not against them, both in communication and in competition. With the discussions held today with Ofcom we are of the opinion that the start of the change for the industry starts here, and we are pleased that Ofcom has accepted our views and suggestions today and agreed to further discussions with us in the future."
Roger Godsiff MP, champion of cashback, welcomed the "long overdue" meeting in the House of Commons today (Wednesday) by tabling an Early Day Motion putting the blame for cashback schemes squarely at the feet of the networks, saying the voluntary arrangement is inadequate.
"…agrees with the IMPDA that the consumer has been ill served by the failure of the network providers to adequately police the cashback incentive scheme; believes the network providers to be complicit in the active promotion of an unsustainable business model in relation to cashback to achieve connection numbers and highly profitable volume targets; "
"…further believes the voluntary arrangement agreed between Ofcom and the network providers has comprehensively been demonstrated to be inadequate; and supports the IMPDA in its call to Ofcom, following its current review, to introduce statutory regulation not only to protect the consumer but also to eliminate uncompetitive practices within the industry."
"The consumer needs to be protected and UK dealers need to be able to compete and not be dictated to or stifled in their business by the networks. We now look to 2008 as the year fair trade is returned to UK dealers and better protection for the consumer." said Chris Caudle.
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