Based on a study of 17 European countries, the Regulatory Scorecard 2006 from the European Competitive Telecommunications Association (ECTA) shows that three years after the EU framework regulations came into force, liberalisation of national telecoms markets is proceeding at a far from uniform pace.
There is in fact a stark split in performance. The three top countries – UK (1), Denmark (2) and France (3) - have been active in driving pro-competitive reforms, have seen a wealth of telecoms offers, growth and investment in the sector, and have some of the lowest retail prices in Europe. Meanwhile countries at the bottom of the list, such as Germany, Greece and Poland, have struggled to provide a competitive environment, negatively impacting consumers and businesses.
The study also showed that Finland, Sweden and Denmark top the league for the most attractive mobile competitive environments with relatively low retail prices. By comparison, mobile customers in Germany, the Netherlands and Ireland face relatively high prices with little choice.
ECTA looks after the regulatory and commercial interests of new entrant telecoms operators, ISPs and suppliers of products and services to the communications industry. It works for a fair regulatory environment that allows all electronic communications providers to compete on level terms in order to multiply investment and innovation throughout an effective European internal market.