Ajit Pai, Chairman of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said how he's striving to regulate the telecommunications industry with "humility." While speaking at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) on Friday, the top FCC Commissioner stated that the doesn't have the ultimate answer to how the market should be structured and how many major competitors should be a part of it. Instead, Pai said that the new FCC is looking to base its decisions on a number of indicators that suggest how the current market is responding to existing regulations and other factors in an effort to determine how to proceed with regulating it.
Following that statement, the FCC Chairman declined to dismiss the possibility of the FCC approving some major mergers and acquisitions in the telecommunications industry in the future. Pai's latest comments are in line with the stances that the Commissioner previously reiterated on numerous occasions, even before President Trump appointed him to lead the federal agency responsible for regulating the telecom giants in the country. The notion of a free, almost self-regulating market is something that Pai often advocated in the past, and is also one of the main reasons why the current FCC Chairman is looking to overturn the current net neutrality rules that were adopted in 2015 under his predecessor Tom Wheeler appointed by the former Obama administration.
While Pai was always vocal about potential side effects of burdensome telecom regulations, the FCC Commissioner recently stated that the federal agency will be looking to preserve the open Internet even after overturning the existing net neutrality rules, which his critics labeled as contradictory and misleading. Likewise, the FCC Chairman was often criticized for being too friendly towards consolidations of telecom giants in the country, though no such deals have yet been made under his watch. While it remains to be seen how Pai will be looking to regulate the industry going forward, there's little doubt that the Commissioner will be under a significant level of scrutiny from the Democratic party and numerous advocacy groups, as was the case so far. Refer to the video below to listen to Pai's full Friday speech at the AEI.