Belgian Regulators Adopt Draft Decisions Opening up Market for Television and Internet Distribution


On 21 December 2010, the four Belgian telecommunications regulators each published a draft decision (the "Draft Decisions") which aims at opening up the Belgian market for television and internet distribution. At the same time, the Belgian Institute for Postal services and Telecommunications (Belgisch Instituut voor postdiensten en telecommunicatie/Institut belge des services postaux et des télécommunications – the "BIPT") published its analysis of the markets for network and broadband access. Together, the Draft Decisions and BIPT's market analysis aim to tackle competition problems arising in the market for triple-play bundles of internet, telephony and television.

The Draft Decisions result from the joint efforts of the BIPT and the regional regulators, i.e., CSA (Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel), Medienrat and VRM (Vlaamse regulator voor de media). Since January 2010, these regulators have been cooperating intensively on an analysis of the market for television broadcasting market. The Draft Decisions aspire to create a framework in which operators and providers of telecommunications services can compete on even terms. This will in turn offer consumers a larger choice of internet access and television broadcasting services.

The cable operators targeted by the Draft Decisions are Telenet, AIESH (solely with respect to the resale of its analogue TV offer), Brutélé, Numéricable and Tecteo. These operators are required to offer...

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