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Relevance of Retaining Notions of Universal Service in a Competitive Telecommunications Environment – Case of European Union

Dr Archana Gulati
Published Dec 28, 2012

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Abstract

This paper attempts to examine the question of the continued relevance of Universal Service (“US”) in a competitive telecommunications environment. Keeping the scope of examination limited to the European Union (“EU”), the essay seeks to appreciate the concept of US as interpreted and applied under the prevailing regulatory environment in the EU. In order to assess the possible benefits and drawbacks of retention of the notion of US, a brief examination is conducted of the evolution and rationale of US in the EU, its constituents, scope and boundaries, findings of the statutory review process and of achievements reported thereof. It is concluded that given the minimalist, stringent and yet flexible approach to US in the EU, the retention of the notion of US as an integral part of the overall e-communications regulatory framework is essential and beneficial.

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