Ofcom Consultation Copper Retirement

Posted on 25/11/2020

Ofcom has issued a further short consultation on plans for copper retirement. This is part of the Wholesale Fixed Telecoms Market Review, which will define regulation of this market for the period 2021-2026.

FCS has provided a proposal to members regarding a response on the Ofcom consultation on Copper Retirement.

Please login to view the supporting information below.

Ofcom has issued a further short consultation on plans for copper retirement. This is part of the Wholesale Fixed Telecoms Market Review, which will define regulation of this market for the period 2021-2026.

The latest consultation follows Ofcom’s earlier consultation, in June, proposing the removal of charge controls from Openreach’s copper products. At this stage Ofcom did not propose to allow Openreach to withdraw existing copper services during the market review period (i.e. not before 2026)

The latest consultation now proposes allowing Openreach to withdraw copper services earlier than this. Withdrawal would be permitted two years after Openreach gives notification that it has completed ultrafast coverage of an exchange area – such a notification could only be published when or after take up of copper services is less than 10% of relevant premises in a completed exchange.

FCS opposed the earlier proposed plans to withdraw charge controls on the basis that this could create unhelpful geographic anomalies in pricing and remove incentives on Openreach to resolve issues on provision for “edge cases”.

FCS is also proposing to oppose the latest proposals, to allow earlier withdrawal of WLR, on the basis that such withdrawal will trigger forced migrations earlier than originally planned, generally resulting in increased costs for customers.

FCS takes the view that this represents an unwarranted “stick” rather than “carrot” approach and that Openreach should focus on providing greater incentives for end customers to move to fibre now (e.g. by waiving provision charges), rather than relying on compulsion later on.

Please let us have your feedback on this proposed response and, if there is interest from members, we will arrange a call to discuss the detail of the Ofcom proposals and the FCS response during this week. The consultation closes at the end of this week and you can find a copy of the consultation document on the Ofcom website

https://www.ofcom.org.uk/consultations-and-statements/category-1/copper-retirement-process

If you have any queries on this matter, please email [email protected]

Related News

Become an FCS Member