May 11, 2016 / 1:12 PM / 4 years ago

Canada upholds broadcast regulator's decision on fiber-optic lines

A student uses his mobile phone as he walks inside the Engineering building at the University of Waterloo, April 18, 2012. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

(Reuters) - Canada upheld a decision by the country’s telecommunications regulator that the biggest providers must share their ‘last mile’ fiber-optic connections, saying on Wednesday that the government was committed to enabling competition in the sector.

The government denied on Wednesday an appeal from BCE Inc, Canada’s largest telecommunications company, against the ruling by the country’s broadcast regulator, Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

The CRTC decision means that firms that dominate the market will have to share what fiber connections they do have to homes and businesses. This will allow smaller firms to expand.

CRTC’s “decision strikes the right balance between the private sector having incentive to invest and consumers having a competitive choice,” Navdeep Bains, Canada’s minister of innovation, said in a statement.

(This story has been refiled to correct to show government upheld decision on sharing fiber-optic networks on Wednesday, not on capping wireless rates.)

Reporting by Amrutha Gayathri in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila

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