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  • 2019 Corporate Responsibility Report

Our position on broadband – investment incentives are needed

Having a high-performance, reliable, and secure broadband infrastructure is the basis of success for all business sectors and is a key factor in making a business location attractive. Deutsche Telekom has been making considerable contributions for years by investing heavily in the infrastructure for mobile internet and the fixed-line network, including with optical fiber. We show more commitment than any other company to providing full-area coverage, including in rural areas.

In order to drive network expansion, network operators in Germany need investment incentives, legal and regulatory planning security, and technological freedom of action. That enables them to respond flexibly to the circumstances of enterprises and households and meet political, economic, and social requirements. This is the only way to fully harness the potential for cost-effective private network expansion using all available technologies. When it comes to areas where cost-effective broadband expansion is not possible, it is down to the public sector to ensure the gaps are plugged by providing technology and supplier-neutral funding programs and exercising sound judgment. Legal frameworks and regulatory practice need to actively support private-sector investment in new fiber-optic networks and prevent unnecessary financial burdens and red tape for the network operators investing in networks.

In view of the fact that the internet and telecommunications markets are converging rapidly and in light of the growing market power of a few global internet players, the sector-specific regulation of telecommunications that has been pursued to date is creating more and more of an imbalance. The same laws and regulations that apply to telecommunications companies also need to apply to internet companies providing the same services. The objective here must be to create equal competitive conditions and enable fair distribution of the financial burden involved in broadband expansion.