UK telecoms networks are increasingly reliant on high-capacity fibre lines. Such lines are distributed through the country within physical infrastructure specifically built for telecoms networks, such as underground ducts or telegraph poles. While it is open to any telecoms provider to construct such infrastructure, the high cost of construction can reduce the viability of investing in new networks and provides those with existing infrastructure a major advantage in making such investments.
This document is a consultation on proposals for regulation that will allow all telecoms providers access to the largest network of suitable telecoms physical infrastructure, the ducts and poles owned by BT.
Our proposals intend to promote telecoms network competition by making it cheaper and easier to build new high-capacity business and residential networks, and hence further the interests of residential and business customers. We invite stakeholders to comment on the proposals in this consultation by 1 February 2019. We expect to publish our final decision statement in spring 2019, with new measures taking effect one month after the date of that publication.
We have today published a draft statement on our review of the physical infrastructure and business connectivity markets. This has been submitted to the European Commission, which has a month to comment.
We expect to publish our final statement before the end of June 2019.
Ofcom has today extended the deadline for responses to 1 February 2019.
Ofcom has issued a revised version of the consultation. The revisions correct the Draft Legal Instruments, Proposals for SMP services conditions set out in Annex 10 of the consultation which included an error in the definitions of “Physical Infrastructure Access” and “PIA Order” in Schedule 1 to the notification of proposals under sections 48A and 80A of the Communications Act 2003. The definitions have been revised to remove certain text that implied a geographic scope restriction on the proposed physical infrastructure access remedy.