The Communications Regulation Act, 2002 (as amended) requires ComReg to review the maximum CHF that can be charged by the ECAS provider (currently BT) each year. In line with this obligation, ComReg published the above consultation and study into the CHF prepared by Analysys Mason (ComReg 13/96a).

Relevant stakeholders were invited to respond to ComReg's proposal to increase the CHF, by 15 November 2013; with ComReg publishing its Reponse to Consultation and Final Determination on 13 January 2014.

According to ComReg, this year's proposed increase to €3.08 is primarily due to lower than predicted call volumes. The rate of decline in call volumes has been approximately 3.0% as opposed to the 2.0% which was estimated as part of last year's review.  Before finalising the proposed increase, ComReg had indicated it was keen to understand key matters which affect the calculation of the CHF. Accordingly, the consultation invited stakeholders' views on reasonable costs of inputs, having regard to BT's right as ECAS provider to recover its reasonable costs and make a guaranteed return (currently set at 6.63% of the gross book value of its investments ie fixed assets and set up costs), and call volumes. Having taken into account responses received, ComReg concluded that it was satisfied with the costs incurred by BT ie, there are no proposals to disallow any of BT's costs (as ECAS provider) or to require it to amend its operational procedures.

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