|David Edmonds - Director General of Telecommunications|
Born: 6 March 1944
Married with four
Lives in London.
March 1998 date : Director General of Telecommunications, Oftel
Oftel - the Office of Telecommunications - is the independent telecommunications regulator. Its goal is to get the best possible deal for telecoms consumers in terms of choice, quality and value for money. Oftel believes that effective competition is the best way to deliver the best deal for the consumer. Oftel has a strategy of 'competition plus' - a principle that the Director General announced in May 1999 and an approach that has since been developed through Oftel's Strategy, published in January 2000. 'Competition plus' means a primary focus of promoting competition, plus a wider role which includes encouraging better information for consumers, managing access to key scarce resources, and tackling areas where the market fails to deliver and consumers need additional protection.
Although consumers are benefiting from increasingly competitive markets, regulation is needed in many areas. The policy introduced early in David Edmond's time at Oftel, is one of appropriate regulation according to the level of competition in the market. To ensure this goal, an important focus of Oftel's work is a series of effective competition reviews - on Internet access, mobile phones and BT fixed line service. Other projects include the promotion of high speed services through local loop unbundling and increasing the availability of unmetered Internet access. Where appropriate the Director General has reduced the level of regulation, for example in response to the increasing level of competition in the international calls market. The Director General has also encouraged self- and co- regulation to develop important consumer initiatives. Oftel's policy is to work closely with Oftel stakeholders - consumer groups and the industry - to develop projects that will promote the best deal for the consumer, underpinned where necessary by Oftel's regulatory powers.
Other important areas where the Director General has ensured Oftel involvement are in: contributing to the development of a consistent European regulatory framework; supporting the implementation of the national code and number changes by the industry; and, providing greater transparency to the policy making process by publication of market research, market information, benchmarking studies and consumer complaints.
Telecoms is a fast moving environment. Regulating a communications world in which the boundaries between IT, telecoms and broadcasting are quickly breaking down is a key challenge for Oftel. The Government has announced plans to combine the functions of a range of existing regulators, including Oftel, into Ofcom - a new single regulator for the electronic communications sector. The Government's plans for Ofcom are an important focus of Oftel's work and the Director General has worked to set the framework for the development of policy in these areas.
1991 1997 : Managing Director, Group Central Services, NatWest Group
David joined the NatWest Group in 1991 as General Manager with responsibility for the development, operation and management of the Group's £2.8 billion property portfolio. He also became responsible for many of the Group's support services on appointment as Managing Director, Group Central Services, and co-ordinated work on the Group's preparation for European Economic and Monetary Union.
1984 1991 : Chief Executive, Housing Corporation
During his period as Chief Executive, the Corporation became the major instrument for delivering the Governments social housing programme responsible for funding and supervising the housing association movement. He was responsible for a staff of 1,000 and an annual spend of over £1billion. He was an architect of the 1988 Housing Act which radically reformed housing association finance.
1966 1984: Civil Service Posts at the Department of Environment:
Helsby County Grammar School, Cheshire, and University of Keele (B.A. Political Institutions and History).
1974-75 Senior Visiting Fellow, Centre for Metropolitan Planning and Research, John Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA.
Opera, theatre, art; travel, mountain walking, running for fitness (completed London Marathon in 1992 and 1993); golf (Captain of Wimbledon Park Golf Club, 1997).
Council Member, Chairman of the Finance Committee and University Treasurer of Keele University. Board Member, and Chairman of the Property, Planning & Projects Committee, English Partnerships. Member of the Court, University of Surrey. Member, Radiocommunications AgencySteering Board