Open access, European-style

The European Union is reportedly considering the creation of a Brussels-based agency that would have continental authority to regulate issues such as equal access to the networks of Europe's most ardent former telco monopolies.

Is this like having the Euro as a common monetary unit? Despite the EU's good intentions, this reported plan could generate the same level of controversy, and ultimately come off better in some EU countries than in others.

That's because regulatory regimes and competitive realities are pretty divergent from one European nation to the next. Open access is a good thing, but regulating it to a perfect competitive balance has proven elusive, even in the U.S., where we've had a lot of years to get it right. Does it make sense to unify regulatory authority that would force all of Europe's ILECs to functionally separate? (Yes, I'm asking you what you think, so let's hear it.-Dan)

For more about the EU's reported plan:
- see this story in The New York Times (Reg. req.)

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