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Oftel re-address unbundling of exchanges


Owing to the recent failure to attract competition from other telco's to use BT's local telephone exchanges, Oftel are attempting to start the process again by bringing forward the unbundling of the UK's most popular exchanges.

This was announced after a special meeting was held with BT and other telcos last week in order to try and resolve the lack of interest that had occurred. This meeting was more useful as it helped to identify what the problems had been previously and all those that attended were keen to address them so that the unbundling process could proceed.

One of the resolutions that stemmed from this meeting is to make the most sought-after exchanges available to competing telco's as soon as possible. This was stated as to one of the reasons for telcos not taking up the offer previously as they were waiting for the more desirable networks to become available, such as those in the more wealthy urban areas.

Oftel are aiming that by unbundling BT's exchanges will allow competitors to delivery broadband content over ADSL more cost-effectively. This idea was originally part of the European Unions strategy for allowing more competition from other telcos, rather than just the one operator such as BT. This process led to Oftel being criticised by the European Union for allowing the UK to fall behind the scheduled timetable.


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