Germany tackled over Deutsche Telekom stake - Mobile World Live

Germany tackled over Deutsche Telekom stake

08 SEP 2021

Germany’s monopolies commission used an election process to reiterate calls for the telecoms sector to be overhauled, including a suggestion the state should sell its stake in Deutsche Telekom to remove a conflict of interest.

In a statement made as part of a broader push to overhaul nationally-regulated industries, Monopolkommission noted the state’s participation in Deutsche Telekom posed a problematic duality, as the country had the authority to influence the market by mandating the regulatory framework in the Telecommunications Act, while also having an interest in the operator’s financial success.

Die Welt reported the commission previously called for the state to divest its Deutsche Telekom stake in 2019, ahead of a 5G spectrum auction.

At 30 June the state owned a total of 31.9 per cent in Deutsche Telekom. Of those, 14.5 per cent are directly held by the government and 17.4 per cent are owned through state bank KfW.

Alongside calls for divestiture, the commission also appealed for Germany to establish “efficient network infrastructures”, which it argues are important for the economy and society.

It insisted current coverage gaps must be closed and political action was needed to seal what it saw as discrepancies between the nation’s digitalisation goals and reality.

In 2020, mobile operators faced a threat of punitive action after being found to have failed to meet coverage requirements.

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Yanitsa Boyadzhieva

Yanitsa joins Mobile World Live as a Reporter based in London. She has more than 5 years’ experience at various media outlets in her home country Bulgaria. She started her career as a political reporter, followed by taking editor roles...

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