December 19, 2016 / 7:19 PM / 2 years ago

UPDATE 1-Brazil Senate clears way for signing of telecom law

(Recasts; adds context with Senate rejecting motions)

BRASILIA, Dec 19 (Reuters) - Brazil’s Senate on Monday rejected three motions calling for a bill overhauling the telecommunications industry to be put to a vote by full chamber, paving the way for President Michel Temer to sign the reform into law.

The bill was poised to become law after passing committees in both chambers of Congress. However, passage of the bill was held up late on Friday by a motion blocking the president from signing it into law.

The telecom reform, which already passed in the lower house of Congress, is aimed at modernizing a concession-based model that had created uncertainty about the value of the industry’s fixed-line assets.

Brazilian carriers have said for years that a new regulatory framework would unlock billions of dollars of investments in an industry hampered by mandatory spending on old technology.

Earlier in the day, before the motions were defeated, Communications Minister Gilberto Kassab said that the Senate might not finally pass the bill until February, after opposition lawmakers submitted their last-minute objections before the Senate left for a holiday recess. (Reporting by Leonardo Goy; Additional reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier in Rio de Janeiro; Writing by Ana Mano; Editing by Frances Kerry)

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