To ensure that Tim’s ultra-broadband network infrastructure, “more vital than ever for the relaunch of the country in this historic moment, is adequately usable and enjoyed by all citizens, regardless of the operator providing the service to the customer the final”.
This is the main objective that the Supervisory Body on equal access to the TIM network sets itself for the current year. Between 2020 and 2021, in addition to the pandemic effect on networks, there have been many new elements that impact and will impact regulation and supervision, from the creation of TIM’s secondary network company, FiberCop, to the co-investment proposal presented by group at Agcom, without considering the project in a nutshell on the single network.
“Even in the presence of a completely different regulatory scenario from the existing one, the role of third and impartial supervision – assures Gianni Orlandi, president of the SB in an interview with DigitEconomy.24 (report by Sole 24 Ore Radiocor and Luiss Business School ) – will not fail “. To date, adds the president, the Supervisory Body «expresses a favorable opinion on the Italian model of network management in a competitive way. I refer to the fact that the dominant operator, Tim, has for several years reached an advanced level of functional separation in which its wholesale function is structured and encouraged to operate independently ».
Last year Tim presented his network separation project, then creating FiberCop, presented the co-investment model to Agcom and previously also signed the letter of intent on the single network. How will regulation and supervision change in the face of all these new elements?
The scenario that lies ahead, from a regulatory point of view, is being defined by Agcom which, for the occasion, has already started two public consultations, without forgetting the attention on the part of the Agcm on the matter. What I can imagine as a SB is that, even in the presence of a completely different regulatory scenario from the existing one, the role of impartial and third-party supervision cannot fail. The access network must in fact still be subject to constant supervisory activity in order to guarantee the indispensable equal treatment of all operators providing electronic communications services. Moreover, already in 2013 in a recommendation on these issues, Brussels stressed how it was particularly difficult to identify and combat discriminatory behavior based on elements other than prices only by applying a general obligation of non-discrimination. It is precisely for this reason that the Italian model provides for stringent obligations of equal treatment and a fundamental role of the SB aimed at guaranteeing full compliance with it. I believe that this model has proved to be very effective, also because the Supervisory Body today represents a real independent regulatory oversight within vertical integration.