Czech unit of Deutsche Telekom, others propose to settle EU antitrust charges

By Foo Yun Chee

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The Czech mobile unit of Deutsche Telekom, 02 Czech Republic and Czech telecommunications infrastructure provider Cetin have offered concessions to settle charges of restricting competition, the company’s antitrust regulators said on Friday. EU.

Companies would avoid a possible fine and a finding of wrongdoing if the offer were accepted.

The European Commission, which acts as the competition authority in the block of 27 countries, issued the accusations in 2019. The companies entered into the network-sharing agreement in 2011 and then expanded it.

Telecommunications operators are looking to share networks to cut costs and time in the face of regulatory hurdles to mergers, but EU competition authorities fear such deals could violate the rules.

The companies have proposed to modernize the mobile network using multistandard radio access network (RAN) equipment in certain radio frequency layers and have also defined and revised the financial conditions for unilateral network deployments.

They will also ensure that any investments or services provided by their partners on their behalf are cost-based pricing and limit the exchange of information to what is necessary for the operation of the shared network.

Businesses will take steps to ensure that CETIN prevents information overflow between T-Mobile CZ and O2 CZ.

The Commission said it would decide whether or not to accept the offer following comments from third parties. The proposal would remain in effect until October 28, 2033 if accepted.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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