Commission launches public consultation on costing methodologies for key wholesale access prices in electronic communications
A European Commission report released in June 2010 (Communication on Article 7) showed that national telecoms regulators apply divergent costing approaches when setting cost-oriented wholesale access prices. These are the regulated prices which alternative operators pay to access the infrastructure and services of dominant telecom operators.
Even where national regulators apply the same cost model for the same access products, there are substantial variations in terms of implementation. This leads to a considerable divergence of access prices across Europe which can not be explained solely by variations in underlying costs. The resulting regulatory fragmentation not only jeopardises much needed investments in new technologies but also hampers the evolution of the Single European telecoms market and telecom operators to be active in several Member States. Ultimately, European consumers are not able to benefit from the choice of services and affordable prices which could otherwise exist.
This is why the Commission announced in its Digital Agenda for Europe that it would prioritise the provision of guidance to national regulators on costing methodologies for key wholesale access prices. Such guidance also aims at reinforcing the impact of the Commission Recommendation on NGA Networks which seeks to foster investment while safeguarding competition.
The Commission is now launching a public consultation on different costing methodologies relating to the implementation of cost-oriented wholesale access pricing and to investment incentives inF the transition period from copper to fibre-based networks.
In parallel, the Commission has also launched a public consultation on the application, monitoring and enforcement of non-discrimination obligations in electronic communications.
Period of consultation: The consultation closed on 28 November 2011
Consultation document: Questionnaire for the public consultation on costing methodologies for key wholesale access prices in electronic communications
Results of the Public Consultation :