What does a telecommunications company do

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Telecommunication networks are one of the central infrastructure facilities in the country.

Ezio Gutzemberg-Fotolia.com)

Competition in the telecommunications sector

Since the beginning of market liberalization, competition in the telecommunications sector has developed rapidly. Many companies have entered the market. The providers are upgrading their networks and investing in new technologies. In addition to the telecommunications networks, many networks of TV cable network operators have now also been equipped for Internet and telephony. Cellular networks are also being expanded for fast Internet access.

Nevertheless, the telecommunications markets are highly concentrated. In addition to many local and regional companies, a few large providers shape the market. In addition, the markets are currently in a phase of consolidation. A number of providers are joining forces. The markets are increasingly saturated.

Many telecommunications providers also only have limited network infrastructures. You are therefore dependent on advance payments from Deutsche Telekom. Some of these wholesale areas are subject to regulation by the Federal Network Agency.


What does the Bundeskartellamt control?

The Bundeskartellamt protects competitive structures in the telecommunications markets through merger control. For example, mergers of large cable network operators were prohibited or only approved under strict conditions in order to prevent further market concentration.

With the instrument of abuse control, the Federal Cartel Office can take action against dominant and powerful telecommunications companies. In the past few years, the office has examined in various procedures whether providers are displacing competitors from the market through their pricing and discounting.

Telecommunications providers are increasingly cooperating in expanding their networks with broadband capability. The Bundeskartellamt examines whether inadmissible price agreements are being made within the framework of these cooperations and to what extent the cooperations restrict efficient infrastructure competition.

The Federal Cartel Office is also involved in regulatory decisions by the Federal Network Agency on the telecommunications sector. The decision as to whether a market is subject to regulation under the Telecommunications Act (TKG) is made by the Federal Network Agency in agreement with the Federal Cartel Office. For other regulatory decisions by the Federal Network Agency, e.g. on network access charges, the office regularly makes use of its right to comment.

See also:

Notes on the competitive evaluation of cooperations in fiber optic expansion in Germany (2010)