Kabel Deutschland sues DT over cable duct fees

10 Apr 2012

German cable operator Kabel Deutschland has filed a lawsuit against Telekom Deutschland, a wholly owned subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom (DT), alleging that the former monopoly is overcharging it for the co-use of cable ducts. Kabel Deutschland has announced that it is seeking to reduce the annual fee it pays DT for the use of its cable ducts by around two-thirds from the current level of approximately EUR100 million (USD130.8 million), as well as the repayment of around EUR273 million of fees already paid, plus interest. Kabel Deutschland said it believes that it should pay the same level of fees to DT set by network regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA), for VDSL lines, stating that there are ‘no differences between the regulated ducts and the ducts used by [Kabel Deutschland] which would justify a difference between the price payable by Kabel Deutschland and the regulated price.’ Meanwhile, Reuters reports that DT has rejected the allegations, with the former monopoly stating that its prices were ‘absolutely correct’ and that Kabel Deutschland’s interpretation of the law was ‘wrong.’ Kabel Deutschland said it expects the proceedings and the legal decision to take several years until effective.