Cable duct sharing regulations, other underground network reforms approved

4 Sep 2013

Ecuador’s National Telecommunications Council (Conatel) and the country’s Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Society (MINTEL) on 29 August 2013 approved a resolution on regulatory reform for underground fixed network infrastructure. The adopted resolution introduces a process to amend several regulations governing the provision of telecoms services, via public hearings, with the twin aims of encouraging competitive deployment of fixed infrastructure while reducing environmental impact. The new regulations call for a survey to be completed within one year mapping existing subterranean networks, while encouraging the replacement of traditional copper and coaxial lines with fibre-optics. Under the new regulation, telcos must also submit information related to their physical network deployments, both national and municipal. Additionally, Conatel’s resolution included the introduction of mandatory infrastructure sharing of network elements (including telecoms equipment and related civil works elements) such as underground cable ducts, surveys, equipment cabinets and other elements necessary to make the competitive rollout of underground fibre viable.