Geographic numbers - safeguarding the future of geographic numbers

 Issue 16 February 2011

Executive summary 

Synopsis

  • Administrative measures – we support Ofcom pursuing further the measures it proposes, with the proviso that there will be particular areas where we would be unable technically to support blocks of 100 numbers;
  • Supply measures – we think Ofcom has identified the two most promising supply measures for most areas (closing local dialling and overlay codes), though we think Ofcom needs more information urgently from range-holders and other stakeholders to be able to choose between them. We urge Ofcom to audit all geographic number range-holders straightaway to find out the extent to which blocks are being used and use the results of this to inform its decision;
  • Demand measures – we think that the administrative measures proposed will make a lot of difference. Given this and the mild reaction customers seem to have to the proposed supply measures, we feel that Ofcom can meet its objectives better without introducing number charges. We note that charging would have no effect if fees were set too low. If they were high enough to have an effect, many of the resulting changes of CPs’ behaviour would negatively impact customers in a whole host of ways. We therefore

 

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