The European Commission has given its opinion on the CRC draft decisions which lay down the tariffs for access to the cable networks of Telenet, Brutélé and VOO NV/SA. The BIPT is satisfied to find that the Commission does not raise any “serious doubts”, thus avoiding a complex procedure and several months of delay in adopting the tariff decisions. Moreover, the Commission’s approval is not accompanied by major objections, even though two comments have been made, which the CRC will duly have to take into account.

Firstly, the Commission thinks there is a risk of excessive cost recovery by the cable operators, especially as far as the highest Internet speeds are concerned. The Commission refers to the cumulated effect of various supplements to the modelled costs (such as the margins to cover the overhead and IT costs as well as the extra margin of 5 to 10% on top of the cost for the highest Internet speeds). 

Secondly, the Commission asks the CRC to re-examine whether analogue television should be included in a cost model that is based on an efficient operator. The Commission wonders whether an efficient operator would continue to offer analogue television throughout the regulatory period. 

In accordance with what is laid down in the regulatory framework the CRC will take maximum account of the Commission’s comments and evaluate whether and to what extent they require extra motivation to be given or amendments to be made to the draft decisions. The final decisions should be adopted by the CRC by late May or early June.

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