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One Big Problem – OBP



OBPs are Outbound Payments, they’re what’s paid to the telephone company in the country that finally delivers a call there from another country.

So if you call France we might send the call to France Telecom. We charge you 1.5p per minute and then have to give France Telecom almost all of it. The payment to France Telecom is the OBP.

Then Brexit comes along.

Back in an earlier blog I said that Brexit wouldn’t make any difference to either us or you as far as telecoms go, well that was before the idea of no-deal became a near certainty.

Now we’re hearing rumours that as soon as we’re out of the EU without a deal we’ll be hit by OBPs. That call to France that cost you 1.5ppm could easily cost you 15ppm. Flashback to 2004 when we started out sending telephone calls around the globe.

This is not project fear, we can see it happening already. If a call leaving us gets to the EU without an unambiguous CLI (Calling Line Identity) showing that it’s from another EU country, that kind of surcharge is being slapped on it. What will happen with a no deal is that surcharge – which is already being applied to calls entering the EU from outside it – will apply to the UK too.

Some say that this won’t happen because it’s MAD. MAD as in Mutually Assured Destruction; but mad it may be.

Come on guys, get a grip.

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