Ireland’s dominant fixed line operator eircom officially snubbed demands from regulator ComReg for automated bulk migration of numbers and local loop unbundling (LLU), saying that the development of systems to deliver such a product would take 18 months and cost EUR13 million. ComReg proposed the implementation of new forms of LLU access on behalf of alternative operators BT Ireland, Magnet and Smart Telecom. The requests predominantly concern the migration of customers from wholesale line rental and bitstream broadband to full LLU, and the bulk migration of bitstream users. In August a High Court ruled that the regulator could not force eircom to comply, because the telco was currently appealing against an earlier ruling concerning its unbundled products. There is, however, a glimmer of hope for ComReg after eircom requested the convening of an industry forum to formulate a plan for LLU, as well as geographic number portability. ‘eircom believes there is currently no case for a migration process as proposed,’ the telco said in a statement. ‘Further, eircom has proposed that ComReg should conduct a full market analysis, consultation and regulatory impact assessment before considering any further actions’.
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