Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Croatian Constitutional Court vs. Croatian Telecomm

Unlike Tudjman’s years, when it used to be the only government institution with semblance of standing up to the government, Constitutional Court is very low-key these days. But today it made the verdict that would affect each and every Croatian – it banned Croatian fixed phone companies from charging so-called “subscription” – 13 € of fees that every phone user had to pay whether he used phones or not. The decision was far from unanimous – five out of 13 judges dissented and the debate was quite heated.

The explanation for this decision is in sloppy job by Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Communications – according to 1999 Telecommunications Act, minister had to issue book of regulations covering the fixed phone network financing, but both former and present government failed to do so. Instead, phone companies use old 1997 regulations. The “subscription” would be abolished on October 31st 2003, and by that time government would hopefully correct this error.


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