BRASILIA (Reuters) - The board of Brazilian telecoms regulator Anatel on Wednesday voted against a proposal by Telefonica Brasil SA to swap 3 billion reais ($861.08 million) in regulatory fines for new investments.
The Anatel board rejected the fine-for-investment swap by a 3-2 vote, said Juarez Quadros, head of the regulator. The company has been hit with various fines stretching back several years.
Telefonica said in an emailed statement that the company lamented the regulator’s decision. It stressed it would continue investing in upgrading its operations.
Telefonica, Brazil’s largest telecommunications company, can make a final appeal back to the board to reconsider its decision. If Anatel’s board again rejects it, the company can appeal to a federal court. In its statement, the company did not say what action it planned to take next.
Reporting by Leonardo Goy; Writing by Brad Brooks Editing by Diane Craft, Toni Reinhold