Paris, 7th February 2012
ARCEP welcomes the announcement of the creation of the "SVA+" association, a self-regulation body whose members include electronic communications operators and value-added service providers. One of the association's main goals is to draft and disseminate a code of practices for the fair and legitimate use of value-added services (VAS). This initiative from the sector will help restore consumers' trust in VAS.
In its 30 proposals on behalf of consumers, which were published in February 2011 and whose impact will be assessed before this summer, ARCEP invited VAS market players to be proactive in establishing a code of practices for the sector. So the creation of the SVA+ association is a crucial step in this direction. Naturally, the implementation of the rules and recommendations drafted by the association will need to be monitored. So the Authority will keep a close watch over how the sector's practices evolve.
ARCEP also continues to devote efforts to the issue of value-added services to ensure greater transparency in their pricing - whose structure needs to be revised, to be able to carry over the actual cost of these services to consumers. In March, the Authority will be submitting to public consultation a draft decision on modernising the pricing scheme for special numbers, taking into consideration stakeholders' responses to the first consultation on the topic which was held in summer 2011. As a reminder, the main directions being taken to update the system concern:
- standardising the pricing methods used by wireline and wireless operators;
- the explicit dissociation of the price of the service delivered by the provider ("S") and the price of the call ("C") which is aligned with the price of calls to fixed lines;
- simplifying the range of time-based rates and creating a range of call-based rates (in other words regardless of the length of the call) for service providers;
- the development of toll-free numbers for users calling from a fixed or a mobile line.