The president and CEO of BCE, George Cope, has told Canadian watchdog the CRTC that incumbent telcos should no longer be forced to give independent ISPs wholesale access to legacy copper-based networks. ‘The monopoly legacy telephone network is truly a relic of the past,’ said Cope. ‘In a competitive environment like this we must choose to whom we sell and distribute our products and at what price, just as any other competitive industry.’ Citing the company’s significant spending on the deployment of fibre (FTTN and FTTH), the executive claimed that if independent ISPs have access to fibre networks then speeds will slow to such an extent that services such as IPTV will not be able to be offered. However, Andrew Day, CEO of Primus Telecom, said that unless changes are made to allow the company to offer speeds similar to those that will be on offer soon from Bell, Aliant and Telus, then ‘Primus will effectively be forced out of the residential high speed Internet business within five years’. Day also stated that allowing ISPs access to new networks actually spurs investment, arguing that Primus does not solely resell internet access but has also spent hundreds of millions of dollars on its own infrastructure.
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