EC approves Germany’s layer 2 bitstream access charges

23 Dec 2016

Germany’s Federal Network Agency (FNA) has formally set the charges for ‘layer 2 bitstream access’ after its proposal was approved by the European Commission (EC). As such, incumbent telecoms operator Telekom Deutschland (the domestic operating unit of Deutsche Telekom) may charge a fee of EUR15.17 (USD15.78) per month for 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. ‘I very much welcome that the EC has given our decision the green light. For network areas that can be upgraded with vectoring technology, a high-quality alternative is now available for access to the local loop,’ commented the FNA’s President Jochen Homann.

In October 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.