The Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) has opened a formal investigation into possible distortions of competition in the deployment of fibre networks in the Flanders region. ‘On the basis of serious indications of practices capable of distorting fair competition and the efficient rollout of fibre networks in Flanders, and taking into account the BCA’s policy note of 12 May 2022 which identifies the telecommunications sector as a priority sector, the Prosecutor General has decided to open a formal investigation,’ the watchdog said in a statement released last Friday. It stressed, however, that initiating such an enquiry does not imply that companies are guilty of anti-competitive conduct. No concrete details were provided about the investigation.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Proximus set up Fiberklaar, a joint venture with EQT Infrastructure, in March 2021 with the aim to connect at least 1.5 million homes and businesses in Flanders to an open fibre network by 2028. Rival Telenet, meanwhile, signed a deal with utility provider Fluvius last October to deploy a fully open access network in the region, including both cable and FTTH services.