Germany seeks EC approval for layer 2 bitstream access charges

22 Nov 2016

Germany’s Federal Network Agency (FNA) has submitted a proposal for ‘layer 2 bitstream access’ charges to the European Commission (EC) for approval. The regulator has suggested that incumbent telco Telekom Deutschland (the domestic operating unit of Deutsche Telekom) may charge a fee of EUR15.70 (USD16.66) per month for access to ADSL connections, EUR18.56 for the VDSL 16Mbps/25Mbps/50Mbps options (or EUR16.55 per month if competitors commit to a certain number of lines upfront under Telekom’s ‘contingent model’) and EUR19.10 for VDSL 100Mbps connections. The EC and the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications (BEREC) now have one month to submit their comments on the FNA’s proposals, and if no serious doubts are raised during this period, the charges can then be put into effect.

Last month the FNA published, and provisionally put into force, Telekom Deutschland’s amended and supplemented reference offer for layer 2 bitstream access, which sets out the specific conditions and mutual obligations applicable should competitors seek layer 2 bitstream access from the incumbent. The expedited decision implementing the layer 2 bitstream reference offer was necessary, as from 1 November 2016 Telekom is obliged, when it deploys vectoring outside proximity areas (outside a radius of 550m from a main distribution frame), to offer its competitors a layer 2 bitstream product as a substitute for access to unbundled loops. Prior to this date, it was sufficient for Telekom to offer IP-based layer 3 bitstream access.