This document concerns the regulation of leased lines, which are high-performance transmission services often delivered over optical fibre. They are used as components of communications services for businesses and of mobile and fixed broadband services for all users.
We currently impose regulations on how BT provides leased lines in certain markets because we have found that it holds significant market power.
We are now conducting a review of competition in the supply of leased line services in the UK. As part of the review, we are required to consider the full range of available options that could support our regulatory objectives of effective and sustainable competition, innovation, efficient investment and widespread availability of telecoms services.
In this document we discuss a form of regulation which we have not imposed on BT’s provision of leased lines, known as passive remedies. Regulations of this form would require BT to let its competitors use its physical infrastructure, such as ducts, poles and/or unlit (‘dark’) optical fibres, to provide their own leased line services.
In order to consider the full breadth of possibilities before making proposals, we need to be in a position to be able to develop options which both exclude and include passive remedies. The purpose of this consultation is to seek stakeholders’ comments to help us do this. In particular we are seeking comments on the following areas:
Our assessment of competition is still at an early stage. Consequently we are not yet in a position to determine what regulations, if any, we should propose. We plan to publish our proposals for the market review in the spring of 2015
Erratum 06|11|14: A small correction was made to paragraph A1.11.