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Internet Provider Takes On Top European Carriers (fwd)]

Erläuterung:  Johan Helsingius aka Julf war über lange Jahre
hinweg der Betreiber von anon.penet.fi.

Date: Thu, 05 Jun 1997 05:44:55 -0400
From: David Farber <farber@cis.upenn.edu>
Subject: IP: Internet Provider Takes On Top European Carriers

    Internet Provider Takes On Top European Carriers (06/04/97; 9:00 a.m. =
 By Peter Chapman , TechWire

  BRUSSELS -- One of Europe's leading independent Internet service
providers is to launch anti-trust actions against the European Union's top
three telecommunications carriers.

 EuNet International, a Dutch-based ISP, said Tuesday it is set to launch =
slate of complaints to the European Commission over alleged dirty tricks =
including abuse of dominant market position and unexplained delays to
services promised to EuNet -- by top EU telecom carriers attempting to
protect their online service business against the independent ISPs.

 EuNet International product development director Johan Helsingius said =
company will file complaints to the European Commission against Deutsche
Telekom, France Telecom and British Telecom. EuNet has already filed one
complaint last month, against Belgium's national carrier Belgacom. Outside
the EU, the company has won a case against Swiss PTT over unfair subsidies
to its own online service, Helsingius said.

 "Belgacom has shown discriminatory practice toward us on almost
everything, including delaying on deliverables without explanation,"
Helsingius said at a European chief executives' conference organized by =
Wall Street Journal here. "There's no decision yet, because the commission
is still investigating the case."

 The EC regulates competition in the 15 countries of the European Union.

 'But that [the complaint against Belgacom] is just a pilot," Helsingius
added. "We have a box full of other complaints against incumbent operators
in Germany, the United Kingdom and France. In Germany, Deutsche Telekom is
so strong in the market that they just dominate."

 EuNet International, which runs its own Internet backbone but needs to
interconnect with local networks, is also unhappy with its treatment from
Dutch operator PTT Nederland, Helsingius said, but he added: "They are not
the worst offenders"

 EC competition officials declined to confirm whether the commission will
launch a full investigation over the Belgacom case.

 "We are doing our duty, and Belgacom knows us very well," said one senior
competition official, who could not be quoted by name.

 Complaints against European national telephone companies by ISPs and by
independent telecom carriers are expected to increase during the next six
months, as the EU prepares for the liberalization of telecom markets in
January 1998.

 But though the European telecom services market is supposed to be open to
competition by January next year, the EC has yet to work out how it will
treat Net-based services -- such as Internet telephony -- which compete
directly with traditional carriers. The EC said in May it was setting up a
special unit to deal with complaints of anti-competitive behavior in the
run-up to liberalization of the telecom market.

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