ComCom extends universal service licence for one year
Bern, 19.05.2022 - The Federal Communications Commission (ComCom) has extended Swisscom's current universal service licence unchanged for another year. It has done so because of the ongoing amendment to the ordinance in which the Federal Council is redefining the scope of the universal service for telecommunications.
In December 2021 the Federal Council announced its intention to redefine the universal service for telecommunications in the Ordinance on Telecommunications Services (OTS). More specifically, it proposed to increase the internet speed available in the universal service to 80/8 Mbps. The Federal Council opened a public consultation on this bill in December 2021 (cf. Federal Council press release of 10.12.2021).
The current universal service licence, which Swisscom has held since 2018, expires at the end of 2022. In view of the ongoing revision of the OTS, ComCom is of the opinion that there is currently no stable legal basis for reallocating the universal service licence. Therefore, in order to guarantee uninterrupted provision of the universal service, it has decided to extend the licence – unchanged in terms of content – by one more year to the end of 2023 (see also ComCom press release of 10.12.2021).
Before awarding the future universal service licence, ComCom will consult with stakeholders and subsequently decide on how to proceed. The future licence will not be awarded until the Federal Council has decided on the content of the universal service and legal certainty has been established.
What is the universal service for telecommunications?
The universal service comprises a range of basic telecommunications services that must be accessible to all sections of the population throughout the country, in good quality and at affordable prices. The purpose of the universal service is to ensure that everyone throughout Switzerland has an opportunity to participate in social and economic life.
The Federal Council periodically updates the OTS to specify the details of the universal service. The licence is awarded by ComCom. The universal service currently includes various services for people with disabilities, a minimum internet speed of 10/1 Mbps, a telephone line with one or three numbers and two free directory listings (cf. Art. 15 OTS).
Address for enquiries
ComCom Secretariat, tel. +41 58 463 52 90
Federal Communications Commission ComCom