South Korea’s SK Telecom (SKT) and LG Uplus have once again been penalised for providing illegal handset subsidies to retailers and consumers, with both operators given seven-day business suspensions.
The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) said it would impose business suspensions (during which time they are unable to sign up new subscribers) on both SKT and LG Uplus for exceeding the KRW300,000 won ($254) subsidy per customer, Yonhap news agency reported.
The KCC lowered the subsidy level last October to curb what it called “excessive subsidies” that it said led to higher mobile tariffs.
KCC said SKT provided retail stores with handset subsidies over the legal limit, while one of LG Uplus’ major retail agencies asked its salespeople to provide illegal subsidies to customers.
The suspensions will run from 1 to 7 October. LG Uplus was also fined KRW2.12 billion.
The country’s three mobile operators have been fined repeatedly over the past year for offering illegal handset discounts, with the KCC last fining the three in March for a combined KRW3.4 billion.