Competition vs. Regulation in Mobile Telecommunications
This paper questions whether competition can replace sector-specific regulation of mobile telecommunications. We show that the monopolistic outcome may prevail independently of market concentration when access prices are determined in bilateral negotiations. A lighthanded regulatory policy can induce effective competition. Call prices are close to the marginal cost if the networks are sufficiently close substitutes. Neither demand nor cost information is required. A unique and symmetric call price equilibrium exists under symmetric access prices, provided that call demand is sufficiently inelastic. Existence encompasses the case of many networks and high network substitutability.
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