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EU Digital Scoreboard - ETNO members welcome progress on 2013 broadband development objective but share Commission’s concerns over declining network investment

Date

31 May 2011

Sections

InfoSociety

Brussels 

The digital scoreboard confirms a decline in revenue of telecoms operators and in their investments for the second year in row, despite rapidly increasing data traffic and consumer take up of broadband, says ETNO who represents leading investors in fast and ultra-fast broadband networks.

“Through their investments and public private partnerships, ETNO member companies are contributing to the Digital Agenda objective of universal broadband coverage by 2013 which is well on track. ETNO members are committed to deploy fast and ultra-fast networks by 2020 and call on the European Commission to create optimal conditions for network investments in the EU to increase”, says Luigi Gambardella, Chair of the ETNO Executive Board

The European Commission recognises in its digital scoreboard that ”the evolution of the access revenues from access to the network is in sharp contrast with the increasing revenues coming from activities taking place within the network themselves...”.
“This disconnection between traffic increase and revenue growth calls for a broader reflection on the economy of the sector and its impact on the future of the Internet. A new sustainable environment must be found through which all players of the Internet are encouraged to contribute to the challenge of investing in additional Internet capacity”, added Gambardella.

In order for the society and the economy as a whole to benefit from broadband, ETNO calls on the European Commission to:

- Allow for new business models to emerge from the market such as differentiated retail offers and commercial agreements for traffic delivery;

- Encourage national regulatory authorities to apply a more targeted regulatory approach to next generation access networks which fully reflects the local and regional diverging competition realities, encourages investors by providing certainty over returns of current and future networks and supports effective risk sharing agreements;

- Accelerate consumer take up of fast and ultra-fast networks by increasing the choice of legitimate online content, though an adaptation of copyright and licensing systems to the new technologies and the creation of a truly single market for legitimate online content.

ETNO’s 40 member companies from 35 European countries represent a significant part of total ICT activity in Europe. They account for an aggregate annual turnover of more than €250 billion and employ over one million people across Europe. ETNO companies are the main drivers of broadband and are committed to its continual growth in Europe.

For more information, please contact: Thierry Dieu, ETNO Communications Manager Tel: (32-2) 219 32 42 Fax: (32-2) 219 64 12 E-mail: dieu@etno.be

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