Commission investigates Polish regulation
By Manon Malhère | Friday 27 April 2012
On 26 April, the European Commission decided to investigate a plan by the Polish telecoms regulator (UKE) not to impose cost-oriented prices for access to the future fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) networks of the incumbent Polish telecoms operator Telekomunikacja Polska (TP). The aim of FTTH-based network solutions is to bring fibre all the way to the users’ home.
Neelie Kroes, the commissioner for the Digital Agenda, said: “We need to avoid fibre-based broadband monopolies. This investigation will examine whether the right balance exists between investment incentives and protection of a level playing field in Poland”.
According to the Commission, UKE proposes not to regulate the prices which TP will charge to alternative operators to access its fibre network because it wants to encourage the main operator to roll out such networks in Poland.
Yet, under the Commission’s 2010 recommendation on next-generation access networks (2010/572/EU), the national regulators must impose cost-oriented prices for access to the main operator’s network. A telecom regulator can exceptionally decide not to regulate the price of access to the network of dominant operator(s) if it can show that alternative operators can get such access on competitive terms, which is likely to result in effective retail competition.
Under Article 7a of the Telecoms Directive (2002/21/EC, amended in 2009), the Commission, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the UKE will work for three months on a solution to this case.