FICORA drops broadband de-regulation proposals

28 Jan 2009

Finnish telecoms regulator FICORA has announced that it will abandon proposals to ease wholesale broadband access regulation following opposition from the European Commission. The regulator had proposed de-regulation in major cities across the country, arguing that retail and wholesale charges for broadband services were lower in those areas than the national average. It also noted that in each area where de-regulation was mooted there were at least two competing operators with their own equipment for providing broadband services.

The European Commission claimed however that the market share held by the main operators was too high for regulation to be removed, adding that one operator holding more than 50% of the market was itself adequate proof that competition was not strong enough in the sector. It also argued that broadband connections provided over cable television networks did not create enough competition to connections on the traditional copper network. It is understood that FICORA will now prepare new proposals for broadband regulation in the country’s major cities. This will be subsequently submitted to the European Commission once it has been commented on by operators.