BSG welcomes Ofcom major review of UK's digital communications
Ofcom announced yesterday the launch of its strategic review of digital communications, a decade after the first review was completed. The regulator will be considering whether current competition and investment infrastructure in the digital communication sector are fit for consumers and businesses’ current and future needs.
This announcement comes only months after the Government (led by DCMS) launched a public consultation in August 2014 on its Digital Communications Infrastructure Strategy (DCIS) which is likely to explore similar issues and map out actions that the Government and the industry should take to ensure that the right infrastructure is in place to give the UK the best connectivity by 2025-2030. We expect the DCIS to be published before the end of March although this is not yet confirmed. It is also worth noting that the EU will shortly initiate work on its review of the framework for electronic communications. These reviews come at a time of transformation in the telecommunications markets, consolidations and investments in the mobile and fixed network.
The Ofcom review which will cover both fixed and wireless network and services, will essentially focus on issues related to incentives for efficient private sector investments and competition. It will also consider whether there is scope for deregulating networks and services in some areas.
This review will start with a stakeholder consultation which is due to end in summer 2015. On the basis of a discussion paper, Ofcom expects to conclude the review with initial conclusions at the end of 2015.
The BSG welcomes these announcements as they tie in with our work programme for 2015/2016. Amongst other issues, we will be considering in the coming months whether the UK has the right regulatory framework to promote competition and innovation in a continuously changing market environment.
Watch this space…