Arcep settles mast sharing dispute between Free, SFR

12 Nov 2015

France’s Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications and Posts (Autorite de Regulation des Communications Electroniques et des Postes, Arcep) has settled a dispute between mobile operators Free Mobile (part of Iliad Group) and SFR in regards to the sharing of roughly 1,000 mobile masts in rural areas. The regulator disclosed that Free requested a review of the conditions under which it can access the passive infrastructure of more-established rival SFR, claiming that ‘the rate of production had slowed since the end of 2014, and that SFR had refused its latest order’. Arcep has now instructed SFR to offer Free Mobile an amendment to the agreement in question, while also requesting that SFR accept the order from Free Mobile and set out a timetable for making the sites available. SFR must therefore comply with a minimum rate of production – as defined by Arcep – provided that Free Mobile also complies with its contractual obligations.