How municipal stakeholders can promote the deployment of broadband and competition

11/10/2010

The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR), the Swedish Post and Telecom Agency (PTS) and the Swedish Competition Authority (KKV) have published a joint statement which aims to promote the deployment of broadband and competition throughout Sweden. A stable market with functioning competition and effective cooperation between private and public stakeholders will enable us to achieve the objectives of the Government’s Broadband Strategy, preferably through market-driven rollout.

The Government has a Broadband Strategy, the aim of which is to increase the availability of fibre throughout Sweden. Major investments in broadband networks will be required to achieve the objectives of the Government's Broadband Strategy. One of the objectives is that 90 per cent of households and businesses in Sweden should have access to broadband with a rate of at least 100 Mbps by 2020. According to the Government these objectives should primarily be achieved through private initiatives.
 
The joint statement proposes that municipal authorities can help to achieve a sound development of the market through initiatives in three main areas: municipal authorities as social planners and representatives of public society interests, municipal authorities as land owners and, when applicable, municipal authorities as owners of broadband networks.
 
“Municipal authorities, county councils and regions want to be able to use reasonably priced modern technology and electronic communications throughout Sweden to make their services for citizens and business more efficient. This is why it is now vital to create the conditions for effective competition and a fruitful interaction between private and public stakeholders in order to achieve the major investment objectives now faced by Sweden. A stable market situation presupposes mutual understanding and trust between private and public interests, and this is what we seek to work towards,” says Anders Knape, Chair of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions.

“Fair competition results in goods and services being developed favourably for consumers. This also applies to the broadband market,” says Dan Sjöblom, Director-General of the Swedish Competition Authority.

“If Sweden is to achieve sustainable competition without the emergence of new infrastructure monopolies, it will need a large number of operators to invest in broadband. In order to achieve this, it is important for operators to have access to municipal land and to fibre in urban networks,” says Göran Marby, Director-General of PTS. 

The joint statement is available at www.skl.se, www.pts.se and www.konkurrensverket.se. It will also be printed and distributed to all municipal authorities in Sweden in the autumn.

Joint statement (in Swedish only, pdf, new window)

For more information please contact:
Björn Björk, SALAR, tel. 08-452 74 25
Viktoria Arwinge, PTS, tel. 073-640 58 76
Erik Westerström, KKV, tel. 08-700 16 83