Promised 25 per cent wireless rate cut is on top of recent reductions: Bains

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The federal government is making clear that cuts to wireless rates it expects from mobile service providers must go above and beyond any price reductions already seen since 2016.

Industry Minister Navdeep Bains says the 25 per cent rate reductions he has been mandated to achieve over the next two years will be measured starting after the Oct. 21 election.

The Trudeau Liberals promised during the fall federal election campaign to cut mobile device rates by an average of 25 per cent, a pledge that was embraced by opposition parties at the time.

But there were no specifics provided on how or when the government intended to force the rate cuts.

In his mandate letter issued weeks after the Liberals were re-elected to a minority government, Bains was told to use ``all available instruments'' to make the 25 per cent reduction a reality within two years.

According to a 2019 report from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, prices in Canada's mobile wireless market had already dropped by an average of 28 per cent from 2016 to 2018.