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Zero Tariff: Ruling of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation

On August 16, 2017, the justices of the Second Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (“SCJN”) unanimously voted to enjoin Radiomóvil Dipsa, S.A. de C.V. (“Telcel”) against the prohibition to charge other telecommunications service providers for terminating calls on its network, also known as “tarifa cero”.

The judges of the Second Chamber of the SCJN decided to grant an injunction in favor of Telcel against Article 131 of the Federal Telecommunications and Broadcasting Law (“LFTR”). In general, the effects of the amparo judgment are as follows:

a) Article 131 of the LFTR is declared unconstitutional, taking into consideration that such rule cannot be applied to a person other than Telcel.

b) It is established that the effects of the above resolution will take effect as of 2018, i.e., the zero rate will continue to apply in 2017.

c) The Federal Telecommunications Institute (“IFT”) will determine the asymmetric regulation regarding interconnection rates for termination of traffic in Telcel’s network, in its capacity as a preponderant economic agent.

d) Telecommunications service concessionaires that entered into interconnection agreements with Telcel may not be obligated to pay interconnection rates prior to 2018, i.e., the rate will not be retroactive.

Therefore, the IFT will have the authority to define interconnection tariffs.

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