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ETNO raises concerns about the universal service situation in Finland


28 Sep 2010



28 September 2010

BRUSSELS – ETNO calls on Neelie Kroes, EU Commissioner for the Digital Agenda, to give attention to the unusual situation in Finland concerning universal service.

Last July, the Finnish authorities introduced a universal service obligation for delivery of broadband access of 1MB to each permanent place of residence and businesses, including in remote and not densely populated areas. As this obligation goes beyond the scope of the ‘minimum set of services’ for universal service as per the EU Directive, legislative reform was required. However, no state-funded compensation has been introduced for the undertakings having to bear this obligation, as foreseen by the Directive.

ETNO is furthermore concerned by a recent announcement that the Ministry of Transport and Communications in Finland intends to impose a retail price cap on the provision of the newly mandated universal service broadband connection. Such a decision would not only lead to a distortion of competition in this highly competitive market but would also prevent operators from making a reasonable return on their investment.

As highlighted by Commissioner Kroes in her recent speech at the Nordic Broadband Forum, the universal services obligations should not impose an unfair burden on the industry.

ETNO relies on the European Commission to ensure that the Universal Service Directive is not implemented in a way which could prove damaging to the market and hamper operators’ capacity to invest.

For more information, please contact: Thierry Dieu, ETNO Communications Manager

Tel:    (32-2) 219 32 42 Fax:  (32-2) 219 64 12 E-mail: