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EU to promote duct sharing and fibre unbundling
Thursday 18 September 2008 14:12:49 by John Hunt

A draft consultation from the European Commission is recommending that new entrants to high-speed broadband services should be allowed to use the cable ducts of telecom operators who hold significant market power (SMP) to help foster the roll out of new services. This comes in recognition that a large amount of costs (up to 80%) involved with the roll out of a next generation network is civil works such as digging up the roads to lay cables and new ducts. By encouraging duct sharing, the costs to new entrants should be significantly reduced and therefore will improve the likelyhood of more providers looking into deploying services, and increasing the choice to end users.

Further to duct sharing, the Commission also recommend that in full fibre to the home (FTTH) deployments, where ducts cannot be accessed or it is economically unviable for other operators to deploy fibre, sharing of dark (unlit) fibre should occur. This is in many ways equivalent to how local loop unbundling (LLU) works at the moment with the sharing of the local copper access network.

"The deployment of new fibre-networks will shape the competitive conditions of the future. We need an appropriate framework to give European companies fair access to the new networks. We want national rules that will not only encourage the necessary substantial investment in fibre investment but also strengthen broadband competition."

Neelie Kroes, EU Competition Commiessioner

The consultation is open until 14th November 2008, looking to finalise and adopt the proposal in 2009.


Posted by chrysalis over 8 years ago
this is common sense, however with BT claiming many of their ducts are no longer useable for new cabling I wonder how it would work here.
Posted by SimonMackay over 8 years ago
Another key issue that needs to be looked at concerning duct sharing and fibre unbundling is the issue of fibre being deployed in private buildings, especially many-tenant buildings like blocks of flats or shopping centres. Is there a guarantee of access to sub-loop unbundled service in these buildings?
Posted by chrysalis over 8 years ago
that would be down to the landlord I expect, a landlord if he has sense will allow it to be fibred up as its then a selling point for higher rent.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
quote"this is common sense, however with BT claiming many of their ducts are no longer useable for new cabling I wonder how it would work here."

Thats because they have been thinking of shareholders rather than the infrastructure too much AGAIN
Posted by kev445 over 8 years ago
Let's not forget that Virgin Media also has significant market power, I really hope they will have to open up their ducts.
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
With another CB dig at BT why does he say that?
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
Carpet; While the copper network was laid down thanks to public funds and BT has a duty to share it, new investments where they'll also be forced to allow sharing and lose the majority of their income (unlike other broadband companies) make for a poor investment, no?
Posted by deniswight over 8 years ago
In my street the BT cables are not ducted. It is the Virgin cables which have roomy green ducts. It would be daft to start laying new ducts just as it would be unthinkable to lay a second set of gas pipes.
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
Not that simple:
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