BT close to cutting business prices

The corporate telecoms market will be deregulated once BT can prove it offers rivals a level playing field

Big businesses can look forward to the possibility of cheaper telecoms bills, after Ofcom confirmed on Thursday that it is prepared to lift restrictions that are currently imposed on BT.

The communications regulator has decided that there may no longer be a need to force the company to offer the same prices to all business customers who spend more than £1m a year. This prevents BT from offering some special deals to large customers.

Ofcom has also decided that BT should no longer be compelled to publish its prices, which can give rivals an advantage when pitching for contracts.

However, this deregulation will only take place once BT has proved to Ofcom that it is giving its rivals a the opportunity to compete fairly, by providing wholesale products that let them target BT customers.

BT has welcomed Ofcom's move, but rival telco Cable & Wireless claimed it was too early to interfere in the corporate market.

"Deregulation won't help improve the service we, and other customers, receive from BT — indeed, as its largest independent customer, we have yet to see any positive impact from the creation of Openreach," said Cable & Wireless in a statement.