According to a report by the Economico website, Zon Multimedia and Optimus – the Portuguese telecoms operators that are in the process of merging with one another – have been selected by the government to assume responsibility for key parts of the country’s fixed line universal service obligations. Zon will be given funding to deploy wireline services in the southern part of the mainland, along with the Azores and Madeira, while Optimus will cover northern and central Portugal. The development will effectively see Portugal Telecom Comunicacoes (PTC) stripped of its existing universal service responsibilities, despite the fact that its contract was set to run until 2025. No reason has been given for the decision, but it has been revealed that PTC will receive compensation totalling EUR33.5 million (USD44.0 million) in lieu of work already carried out in the aforementioned areas.
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