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The Warsaw Voice » Business » August 13, 2008
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Polish Telecoms Break out of the Loop
August 13, 2008 By A.R.    
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Two of Poland's leading telecommunications operators, the former state monopoly Telekomunikacja Polska (TP) and the largest private operator Netia, are gearing up to make the most of the latest round of industry deregulation.

All Polish telecom operators can broaden their customer base now that they have access to TP's network. Meanwhile, TP's opening up of 100 multi-user data centers, also known as co-location centers, offers them the benefits of local loop unbundling (LLU), which means making subscriber lines (or local loops) available to other operators. Netia was first to the punch in signing an LLU agreement and is already operating commercially from 50 centers.

Alternative operators' equipment installed in TP-run co-location centers in TP exchanges has freed up 1.5 million lines. This figure is expected to rise to 2 million, or roughly 20 percent of TP's connections, by the end of the year. "Local loop unbundling is becoming a fact of life, but, apart from that, we're actually looking forward to working with those other operators-like Netia-that are investing in it," says TP chairman Maciej Witucki. "However, considerable changes will have to be made to the regulatory regime before other operators can really start reaping the benefits. Wholesale line rental (WLR) and wholesale broadband access (WBA) are still more profitable than accessing the local loop."

LLU allows other operators to grab the links connecting the TP network with subscribers (dubbed the "last mile" in the industry) to provide internet access and, in the case of full deregulation, voice services as well.
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