DT, PPF offer Changes in their Czech Agreement
Deutsche Telekom and PPF proposed changes in operating a network sharing agreement sealed between their subsidiaries in the Czech Republic. The companies are willing to do that to alleviate competition concerns raised by the European Commission.
In a statement, the EC explained it sought feedback regarding concessions offered by T-Mobile CZ, and PPF’s O2 Czech unit and telecoms infrastructure arm CETIN, in relation to an investigation it commenced in 2016 over concerns a network sharing deal between the parties could reduce infrastructure innovation and competition. A preliminary assessment which was adopted by the Commission in August claimed the network sharing deal may restrict competition by reducing the ability and incentives of the companies to unilaterally invest in network infrastructure and therefore could negatively affect the ability of T-Mobile and O2 to compete in the Czech market.
To alleviate EC concerns, the companies have offered to modernise the mobile network through deploying multi-standard RAN equipment in certain radio frequency layers, alongside ensuring provided investments or services have cost-based pricing. Another proposal would minimise information exchange to the absolutely necessary for the needs to operate the shared network, and for CETIN to prevent information spill-over between T-Mobile and O2’s Czech units. If accepted, the commitments made by the companies would be in force until 28 October 2033. In case these proposals get breached after approval, the EC could impose a fine of up to 10% of each company’s global turnover.