German telecoms company Deutsche Telekom (DT) has confirmed it has put its plan to expand broadband network coverage in rural areas on hold. The announcement follows the lowering of the local loop unbundling (LLU) fee on 31 March by the country’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA). Timotheus Hoettges, CFO of DT, said that the incumbent should not and cannot be the only operator responsible for expanding to rural areas, calling on its competitors to invest in rural broadband coverage, as they promised when campaigning for a lower LLU fee. The fee that incumbent telco DT can charge rivals for using its lines connecting homes and businesses to the local telephone exchange, known as the ‘last-mile’, was reduced by 2.9% from EUR10.50 (USD13.94) to EUR10.20 a month. The fee is reviewed every two years, with the current price expiring on 31 March 2011.