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Germany weighs up regulatory reform to speed fibre deployment

Germany’s telecoms industry should accelerate the build-out of the country’s high-speed broadband network, its regulator said, adding it was considering easier regulation on fibre internet to speed the process, noted Reuters. “Germany has set a goal of providing nationwide internet with speeds of at least 50 mbps in 2018 but the technology relied on by market leader Deutsche Telekom – based on the old copper telephone network – cannot be easily upgraded further. That makes it harder to realise the vision of a gigabit society in which all businesses and households would have access to superfast connections by 2025 – at a cost of 80 billion euros or more. “We can’t delay further investments into the distant future and risk missing out on the chances of digitisation,” said Jochen Homann, president of the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA), presenting its annual reports on the telecoms and postal markets. Germany’s engineering industry has sounded the alarm on the lack of access to high-speed internet, urging the next government to invest up to 40 billion euros to enable connected, automated manufacturing to take off. Homann conceded that Germany was “pretty much at the back” of the international field when it comes to access to fibre internet. He said the BNetzA was considering a more flexible regulatory regime that would allow companies to cooperate in building out the network to save costs, and would depart from strict cost-plus rules on pricing. That view was supported by Germany’s monopoly commission, an advisory panel to the government, which in a separate report opposed calls by Deutsche Telekom to completely deregulate fibre. Read more

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

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