ARCEP submits a scorecard on regulation governing ultra-fast broadband access via optical fibre to public consultation to assess the need for strengthened obligations

Paris, 3 December 2012

In accordance with the Economy Modernisation (or LME) Act of 4 August 2008, and the Law of 17 December 2009 on bridging the digital divide, ARCEP set the obligations that apply to all operators deploying or operating fibre to the home (FTTH) optical local loops through the Decisions of 22 December 2009 and 14 December 2010. In its analysis of wholesale broadband and ultra-fast broadband markets of 14 June 2011, ARCEP considered that these symmetrical obligations (i.e. that apply equally to all operators) which were completed with a singular obligation for France Telecom to provide access to its civil engineering, were sufficient to ensure effective competition in the ultra-fast broadband market – i.e. FTTH optical local loops.

To verify these hypotheses, in 2011 ARCEP provided for a rendez-vous clause midway through this market analysis cycle. This involves analysing the need to impose additional asymmetrical remedies in wholesale markets earlier than originally planned, based on an assessment of the state of competition in the ultra-fast broadband market and on the status of operators’ FTTH rollouts.

The consultation being launched today marks the first stage in the implementation of this rendez-vous clause. Stakeholders – which include electronic communications operators, local authorities and their representative associations – are being invited to comment on this interim assessment and to submit their own analyses. ARCEP will then draft a final report which will state whether there is a need to add to the existing regulatory framework. This report will be made public before the end of January 2013.

This public consultation will run until 4 January 2013. The document being submitted to consultation is available (in French) for download on the ARCEP website.