French regulator’s fine to France Telecom rises to 80 million euros

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The French competition authority raised the fine imposed on France Telecom earlier this year to 80 million euros for considering that the operator behaved in an anti-competitive manner, restricting the market for ADSL services with the consequent guarantee of the resale monopoly the same services.

Although the regulator issued notices in 2001 and 2002, France Telecom continues to maintain the same stance. As the owner of the basic infrastructure that allows competitors to offer broadband services, the operator has an increased responsibility in the market, reveals the competition authority to the international press.

The released fine now results from previous allegations that began with a 1999 complaint from 9Telecom. The French operator was fined 20 million euros in May 2004, with the fine raised earlier this year to 40 million and now again to 80 million euros.

France Telecom announced that it would appeal the decision made by the regulator, considering the fine «disproportionate» since its practices and tariffs respected the regulations adopted by the authority.

It is recalled that this year Sonaecom announced that France Telecom would strengthen its participation in holding telecommunications services of the Sonae Group delivering the shares it held in the share capital of Optimus, Novis and Clix and subscribing to a specific capital increase. The French operator now holds 23.7 percent of the holding national market and realigning the strategic partnership for the fixed and mobile telecommunications area.

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