The proposed tax on UK landlines to fund fibre optic broadband networks should be extended to mobile phone owners, according to BT’s director of industry policy and regulation.
Last month’s Digital Britain report mooted the introduction of a tax of 50p per month payable by all Britons with landlines.
The charge is intended to provide funding for the government’s plan to roll out next generation, fibre optic broadband networks that will help the nation compete with rival economies.
However, Emma Gilthorpe of BT has said that because the money will be available to mobile phone companies, as well as fixed line telephony providers, the scope of the tax should be widened.
Mobile networks would be able to use the money to deploy new broadband-based services.
Ms Gilthorpe said: "The government should consider the opportunity to widen the base for the tax and possibly reduce the amount that each individual household pays."
The charge has been subject of strong criticism from within the telecommunications industry on the grounds that it will be insufficient to fund the proposed overhaul of the UK’s broadband infrastructure.
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