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Commission policy to bring down cost of communications in Europe

The European Commission has adopted a Recommendation on the pricing of short-distance leased lines that could bring down the cost of communications in Europe.

The Recommendation sets price ceilings for leased lines, the short distance communications links that incumbent telec...
The European Commission has adopted a Recommendation on the pricing of short-distance leased lines that could bring down the cost of communications in Europe.

The Recommendation sets price ceilings for leased lines, the short distance communications links that incumbent telecommunications companies rent to other network operators. At present leased line networks represent about 25 per cent of the total telcommunications markets in some Member States, and the percentage is growing.

The short distance circuits form the building blocks of the internal communications networks of European businesses, and are increasingly used by small and medium-sized enterprises to have a permanent link to the Internet.

'The high price of leased lines in Europe has been detrimental to the competitiveness of European companies and has hampered the spread of the Internet in Europe,' said Erkki Liikanen, Commissioner for Enterprise and the Information Society. 'This recommendation will be of benefit to all Internet users, and in particular to SMEs.'

The recommended price ceilings are based on the prices in the three lowest-cost Member States. The Commission Recommendation also calls upon Member States to implement complementary measures to stimulate competition and technological innovation in the local access network.
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