Digital Agenda: Commission calls on Polish telecom regulator to base deregulation proposal on an up-to-date market assessment

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The European Commission has asked the Polish telecoms regulator (UKE) to withdraw its proposal to deregulate conditions under which other operators can access Polish telecom company Telekomunikacja Polska’s (TP) broadband network in 11 communes of Poland. In the Commission’s view, fully supported by the body of European Telecoms Regulators, UKE’s decision could have a negative effect on competition in Poland, and thus limit the offers available to consumers and businesses. This is the second time within the last six months that the Commission requests UKE to withdraw a proposal for regulation in this market.

European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes said: “Regulation can and should be withdrawn as soon as there is sound evidence that competition alone will deliver the most for consumers in terms of quality, choice and prices. However I cannot accept a proposal for deregulation which is based on outdated and unreliable data, contradicted by UKE’s own more recent market assessment. I also regret that UKE does not take account of clear Commission guidelines, issued to help UKE properly regulate this important market.

UKE’s proposal was based on an out-dated market assessment from March 2011, which also contradicts UKE’s own March 2012 market analysis in which the regulator concluded that no single area of Poland was competitive enough to propose complete deregulation.

During the two month in-depth investigation, UKE has failed to provide additional evidence to allow the Commission to withdraw its serious doubts. BEREC has also fully supported the Commission’s decision and recommended UKE withdraw its measure. As a result of today’s Commission action, UKE cannot adopt its decision to deregulate wholesale broadband access in certain communes. Here to read more.

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