NDP Says Conservatives Reject Hearings on Wireless Policy

A House of Commons committee voted down a proposal by the country’s biggest opposition party to hold hearings on the government’s wireless-industry policies.

The New Democratic Party forced a meeting of the industry committee today to discuss whether to hold hearings on the government’s planned wireless spectrum auction. The closed-door meeting ended quickly, leading the opposition to say the committee’s majority of governing Conservative lawmakers voted down the motion.

“In light of this very short meeting, we don’t believe there will be public hearings,” NDP lawmaker Glenn Thibeault said in an e-mailed statement. No further meetings are scheduled, according to the committee’s website.

The country’s three biggest wireless providers are pressing the Canadian government to change the rules for the January auction, which they say favor foreign carriers such as Verizon Communications Inc. The government has rejected the calls, saying it wants to promote competition and lower prices.

A spokeswoman for Industry Minister James Moore didn’t immediately return an e-mail sent after office hours seeking comment.

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