08 February 2017
The Government must cut the high costs and administrative burdens of existing regulatory barriers in order to help ISPs in their efforts to roll out fibre networks.
That’s the view of the Internet Services Providers’ Association (ISPA UK) which is one of the first organisations to publicise its response to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) call for evidence at the end of last year.
The ISPA believes the most important factor government should prioritise is removing regulatory barriers and reducing the high costs and administrative burdens of current regulatory barriers – such as agreeing wayleaves rights and streetworks permits. It says these significantly increase the challenges of rolling out networks in the UK. According to the association, a coordinated approach with a “mixture of levers” will also help its members, including a potential voucher scheme, demand aggregation and access to public sector networks.
The ISPA adds that infrastructure investment and network rollout are market-led. It says that it is therefore vital for the government to clearly set out how it intends to support ongoing industry efforts and provide a clear roadmap to deliver this.
“Government have reiterated their commitment to helping extend fibre networks, which is a welcome step,” says ISPA chairman James Blessing. “Government is right to pursue an ambitious approach for the UK’s communications infrastructure, but this will only be achievable if the barriers which hamper roll out are reduced.”