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EU still divided over 3G licences
Posted: 03-Apr-2001 [Source: Financial Times]

[Commission continues studying options to help manage buildup of 3G infrastructure in Europe.]

By Daniel Dombey in Brussels -- "An attack by Belgium on European Commission suggestions to soften the terms of expensive third generation mobile telephone licences has accentuated Europe's difficulties in ensuring that debt-ridden telecommunications companies provide the services for which they bid.

"Rik Daems, industry minister of Belgium - which will hold the EU presidency for the second half of the year - said he did not want an "unbalanced" approach to help indebted telecoms companies finance the building of 3G networks just "because two of the big countries' governments made money but hurt their industry".

"The Commission has said it would start a dialogue with member states to ease the burden of telecoms companies which could face difficulty building 3G networks having built up debt buying licences soon after the internet boom peaked.


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