Internet service providers (ISPs) are not committing to passing on the savings to consumers, should Ofcom's recent proposals for wholesale broadband price cuts come into effect in April 2012.
Ofcom's broadband pricing proposals, which have to be approved by the European Commission, would result in firms such as Sky and Talk Talk paying less for purchasing lines from BT Openreach.
But as Ofcom announced the number of unbundled lines had surpassed eight million, Sky and Talk Talk told V3 they were not committing to passing any price savings onto customers while BT is considering appealing against Ofcom's proposals.
A Sky spokesperson told V3: "Whilst it's too early to comment on the specifics of [Ofcom's] draft proposals, we continue to work with Ofcom and the rest of the industry to help create the right framework to deliver more choice, quality and innovation for consumers."
Perhaps not surprisingly, Talk Talk seemed happy about the possibility of wholesale prices falling, but like Sky did not commit to passing on any savings to its customers.
"The proposed LLU [Local Loop Unbundling] charges are within expectations. We are pleased that the charges are being reduced - this reflects that BT's charges have been excessive in the past. We are reviewing the detail," a company spokesperson told V3.
BT on the other hand seemed none too pleased its wholesale prices, which are set by Ofcom, are to be reduced once again.
"Whilst the prices are within the range outlined by Ofcom in November, we disagree with some of the underlying assumptions that they have used to determine these charge controls," BT said in a statement.
As BT invests to lay down copper, and more recently fibre, Ofcom's squeezing in prices could affect the firm's willingness to invest in its infrastructure.
BT was quick to point out that as a public company it needs to consider its bottom line.
"Our primary concern throughout this process is to ensure that we are able to achieve a fair rate of return in order to continue our investment in the future of the UK's communications infrastructure," the telco said.
"We will consider all options available to us, including appealing, after Ofcom confirms its final decisions."
An Ofcom spokesperson told V3 that it does not have the power to set consumer broadband prices, but hoped the wholesale price cuts were passed onto the consumer.
But judging from Sky and Talk Talk's non-committal statements, the relationship between wholesale prices and those paid by the consumer is tenuous.
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