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ISPs Want CRTC Intervention in Bell Canada ADSL Services

The Canadian Association of Internet Providers (CAIP) wants the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to make Bell Canada change its retail ADSL activities.

"We are asking the CRTC to direct Bell Canada to immediately cease and desist from providing its affiliates with network facilities for ADSL Internet access service." said Ron Kawchuk, president of CAIP. The organization is made up of over 125 Internet service providers throughout Canada, and serves approximately 80 percent of the market.

In what is known as a Part VII Submission, CAIP asks CRTC to ensure that, if Bell or any of its affiliates wish to provide retail Internet access using ADSL, that the services be provided by Bell on an in-house basis and at cost-based rates that have been filed with and approved by CRTC beforehand.

CAIP is also seeking reasonable wholesale prices for these services.

"Independent members of CAIP are suffering serious and irreparable harm as a result of Bell's anti-competitive conduct in the retail market for ADSL-based Internet access," said John Nemanic, CAIP board member and Director of Access Issues.

"The tariffed rates which CAIP's Independent ISP members must pay for Bell Canada's wholesale ADSL service make it impossible for them to compete with the retail prices offered by Bell. The result is that small ISPs are virtually blocked from participation in the high-speed Internet access market."

The full text of CAIP's Part VII submission to the CRTC is available on their Web site.

Earlier this month, ISP Internet Direct asked regulators to intervene in Bell Canada's marketing tactics to promote the ADSL roll-out. And in August, six Ontario-based ISPs applied to Canada's Competition Bureau requesting it look into the pricing practices of Bell Canada affiliate Bell Sygma.