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Is cooperation the key for 3G companies?

Two European mobile phone operators are set to pool resources and save billions of euros in building third generation infrastructures. The European Commission is expected to give the go-ahead to German group T-Mobile and the UK company mm02, who could combine operations in Ge...

Two European mobile phone operators are set to pool resources and save billions of euros in building third generation infrastructures. The European Commission is expected to give the go-ahead to German group T-Mobile and the UK company mm02, who could combine operations in Germany and the UK, saving up to $5 billion (around 5.13 billion euro). The savings would come by combining base stations and antennae. The two companies already have preliminary regulatory approval to cooperate in Germany and are optimistic that they will get the green light to cooperate in the UK as well. 'We expect that we'll get approval for Britain as well,' a T-Mobile spokesperson said. Several European telecom operators landed themselves in huge debt when they bought expensive third generation mobile licences, amid concerns they would never see the hoped for returns. A series of problems from a lack of handsets to technical delays have beleaguered the technology as investors have watched share prices tumble. A European Commission spokesperson admitted there had been fears that the co-operation agreements would be anti competitive, but the cooperation agreements have been drafted in a way that addresses these concerns.