Fairness at stake in wireless debate

I am writing in response to the recent coverage of the debate over Canada’s wireless sector and the concern for fair access to spectrum.

Dear Editor:

I am writing in response to the recent coverage of the debate over Canada’s wireless sector and the concern for fair access to spectrum.

As the general manager for Telus throughout the interior of British Columbia, this is a topic that hits home for me.

It should also hit home to anyone using a cell phone in the area.

We have consistently stressed that our concerns were never about Verizon coming into Canada; rather, at stake is a very simple principle: fairness. Is Ottawa about to give any large foreign entity a two-for-one advantage over domestic incumbents in the upcoming spectrum auction?

This is not some academic policy question that affects only bureaucrats in Ottawa or CEOs in office towers.

It will directly affect people in communities just like our own.

Let me offer just one example.

Companies like Telus invest billions to build cellphone networks in rural areas like our own. These networks are relied upon for everything from calls to friends and families to 911 emergency services. A foreign company will have made no such similar investments and is unlikely to even make future promises of such investments.

Telus makes no complaint about competing against big foreign companies. But we think it should be at least on a fair basis.

Why give the biggest companies in the world who have made no commitment to Canada or Canadian consumers huge advantages?

Telus is headquartered in British Columbia and we employ thousands here in the province and across the country. We spend billions to serve areas like this one. And we invest millions more back into the community with our support for local charities.

Just like water or natural gas, spectrum is a scarce Canadian resource. If you support a fair approach — one that serves the people of this region directly, one that encourages competition without giving away this precious resource to huge foreign companies, then please communicate your support for a fair wireless policy to your local MP and decision-makers in Ottawa.

Steve Jenkins

General Manager, Interior South B.C., Telus

 

Just Posted

Church building has been a landmark on Summerland’s Butler Street

Neighbourhood in Lowertown has gone through changes over the years.

Changing of the guard for South Okanagan midget baseball team

Aqil Samuel is leaving the club and will be replaced by Josh Snider

Clouds Sunday, sunshine and heat Monday

Weather forecast for the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen looks spectacular

Okanagan Ogopogo bathtub race fundraising efforts over the top

In five years the Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has raised over $120,000 for SOSM Foundation

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

Okanagan MMA fighter captures middleweight belt at home

Jordan Cabrejos scores victory at XFC Unbanned, the return of mixed martial arts to Vernon

B.C. VIEWS: Pipelines set to roll as federal politicians posture

Projects to drive B.C., Canadian economy in years ahead

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

Man shot near Coalmont airlifted to hospital

A man was shot near Coalmont B.C. Saturday afternoon. The victim was… Continue reading

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Renter of torched Okanagan home a British Army veteran, new Canadian

Owen Wilson was just beginning to settle into life in Canada when the blaze occurred

Most Read