Oftel wants BT to halve the cost of its wholesale broadband service.

The Telecoms watchdog has published proposals that would make this occur. The move comes despite BTs decision to reduce its partial private circuit (PPC) charges in February.

Oftel believes prices remain too high: it has proposed that connection charges should be reduced by 50 per cent and rental charges by 30 per cent.

"The proposals are the result of a detailed investigation of the leased-line market which found that BT's wholesale charges for leased-line services are too high and that these prices should be reduced to reflect costs," said David Edmonds, Oftel's director general.

If agreed, the cuts will be backdated to August 1.

"Telecoms operators should pass on these significant price reductions to their business customers of leased-lines services," added Edmonds.