Canadian gov't to push cable providers to unbundle channels


TORONTO, Oct 13 (Reuters) - The Canadian government willsoon require cable and satellite television providers to make iteasier for customers to buy only the channels they want ratherthan pay for bundles, the country's industry minister said onSunday.

"We don't think it's right for Canadians to have to pay forbundled television channels that they don't watch. We want tounbundle television channels and allow Canadians to pick and paythe specific television channels that they want," IndustryMinister James Moore said during an appearance on CTV's"Question Period."

Some Canadian cable and satellite television providers havealready begun to offer so-called "a la carte" pricing, a trendsome analysts think could begin to take hold in the much largerU.S. market.

Moore said Canada's Conservative government is looking atother consumer-friendly moves when the next parliamentarysession resumes such as preventing airline overbooking andcurbing wireless roaming rates charged by telecom companies.

"We also think that roaming fees are too high in thiscountry. We know that there's going to be a new regime put inplace in the first week of December to cap international roamingfees, but we also want to move on domestic roaming fees aswell," he said.

"These are things ... on which our government is going totake action."

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