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The German Telecommunications Reform - Where did it come from, Where is it, and Where is it Going?


  • Ingo Vogelsang


German telecommunications reform came late because of high institutional constraints, powerful beneficiaries and reasonable functioning of the old system. It finally occurred because (1) the beneficiaries had less to lose, (2) Germany was falling behind, (3) reform was proven to work abroad and (4) the EC exerted pressure. The reform, particularly separation of posts from telecommunications, privatization of Deutsche Telekom and the creation of the RegTP, brought radical changes and the formation of new beneficiaries. The current sector crisis should spur research in the stability of competition in network industries and a reevaluation of the current reforms. Further reforms are required by new EC rules that will provide a more unified framework for the entire telecommunications sector. In the long run, privatization and liberalization will be completed, while some kinds of telecommunications-specific regulation will continue. Dominant firm regulation of end-user services is likely to be abolished down the road, while bottleneck regulation may persist. The remaining amount of dominant firm regulation and the pace of deregulation will depend heavily on market boundaries between (a) wireless and fixed networks, (b) high and low capacity subscriber access and (c) high-density and low-density networks. Assessing the interaction between market boundaries and market power requires economic research of intermodal competition and market power. Copyright Verein für Socialpolitik und Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 2003

Suggested Citation

  • Ingo Vogelsang, 2003. "The German Telecommunications Reform - Where did it come from, Where is it, and Where is it Going?," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 4(3), pages 313-340, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:perwir:v:4:y:2003:i:3:p:313-340

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Cremer, H. & Ivaldi, M. & Turpin, E., 1996. "Competition in Access Technologies," Papers 96.416, Toulouse - GREMAQ.
    2. Vogelsang, Ingo, 1988. "Deregulation and Privatization in Germany," Journal of Public Policy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 8(02), pages 195-212, April.
    3. Faulhaber, Gerald R., 1995. "Public policy in telecommunications: The third revolution," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 251-282, September.
    4. Knieps, Günter, 1999. "Zur Regulierung monopolistischer Bottlenecks," Discussion Papers 62, University of Freiburg, Institute for Transport Economics and Regional Policy.
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    Cited by:

    1. Christian von Hirschhausen, 2006. "Reform de"r Erdgaswirtschaft in der EU und in Deutschland: Wie viel Regulierung braucht der Wettbewerb?," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 7(1), pages 89-103, February.
    2. Günter Knieps, 2004. "Privatisation of Network Industries in Germany: A Disaggregated Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 1188, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Ingo Vogelsang, 2004. "Network Utilities in the U.S. - Sector Reforms without Privatization," CESifo Working Paper Series 1142, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Birke, Franziska, 2007. "Universaldienstregulierung in der Telekommunikation heute: Herausforderungen, Chancen und Risiken ; ein historischer Ansatz," Discussion Papers 114, University of Freiburg, Institute for Transport Economics and Regional Policy.

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