ARCHIVED - Telecom Commission Letter - 8638-C12-200708003

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Ottawa, 13 November 2007

File No.: 8638-C12-200708003

By email

To:   Distribution List (attached)

Re: Disclosure of information filed in confidence with the Commission pursuant to Telecom Decision 2007-35

In Framework for forbearance from regulation of high-speed intra-exchange digital network access services , Telecom Decision CRTC 2007-35, 25 May 2007 (Decision 2007-35), the Commission set out the criteria that it will use to determine when it is appropriate to forbear from regulating high-speed intra-exchange digital network access (high-speed DNA) services and the scope of such forbearance. Pursuant to paragraphs 151 and 152 of Decision 2007-35, applicant incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) and competitors must provide specific information for each wire centre for which a demand for forbearance is filed, as per the format set out in the Appendix of that Decision.

The Commission notes that, in Decision 2007-35, it considered that there would be merit in advising ILECs of the percentage of competitor network presence in wire centres with buildings connected to an ILEC's and/or competitors' high-speed DNA-capable network to allow ILECs to properly identify wire centres where forbearance was more likely to occur.

On 4 June 2007 , pursuant to paragraph 183 of Decision 2007-35, Commission staff invited comments on the following:

  1. Whether or not it is appropriate to disclose aggregated information following a determination in a forbearance application for high-speed DNA services, including information filed in the proceeding that led to Decision 2007-35; and

  2. If it is appropriate,

    a.   What information should be publicly disclosed; and
    b.   To what level of aggregation.

The Commission received comments from Bell Aliant Regional Communications, Limited Partnership; Bell Canada; MTS Allstream Inc.; Rogers Communications Inc.; Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SaskTel); and TELUS Communications Company.

The disclosure of information has been assessed in light of sections 38 and 39 of the Telecommunications Act and section 19 of the CRTC Telecommunications Rules of Procedure .

The Commission notes that all parties in this proceeding, except for SaskTel, agreed with the need to disclose some information on the competitors' network presence. A number of parties even submitted that the Commission should disclose more information than what was suggested by the Commission in Table 1 of its letter of 4 June 2007 . Conversely, the Commission notes that SaskTel considered that the information and level of disclosure proposed in the 4 June 2007 letter was highly sensitive.

The Commission notes that the intent in disclosing information is to allow ILECs to properly identify wire centres that did not meet the forbearance criteria set out in Decision 2007-35 but demonstrated some evidence of competition that, in the Commission's view, when combined with other various factors, may demonstrate that these markets are sufficiently competitive to warrant forbearance. The Commission further notes that such disclosure must avoid disclosing competitive intelligence that would permit existing and potential competitors to formulate more effective business and investment strategies to the competitive detriment of other service providers.

The Commission considers that, generally, the more disaggregated the information disclosed, the greater the likelihood that harm will flow from its disclosure. Therefore, with the objective of ensuring that all parties have the benefit of the maximum amount of information placed on the public record in order to ensure an efficient and effective forbearance framework for high-speed DNA services while minimizing the specific harm, if any, likely to result from disclosure, the Commission will disclose on the public record the name of the wire centres by exchange that were the subject of a high-speed DNA forbearance request but did not meet the forbearance criteria set out in Decision 2007-35 in the following circumstances:

  1. The wire centre is deemed to be a small market (where there are less than 25 buildings served) with the presence of some competitor network capability; or

  2. The wire centre is deemed to be a large market (where there are 25 or more buildings served) with competitors' network capability [1] of between 20 and 30 percent .

Pursuant to the above determination, on 20 November 2007 , the Commission will disclose on the public record the information described immediately above from the

proceeding with respect to the disposal of Bell Canada 's application for forbearance from the regulation of high-speed intra-exchange digital services and metropolitan wavelength services in Decision 2007-35.

Yours sincerely,

Original signed by John Traversy

Robert A. Morin
Secretary General

Cc: Mario Bertrand, CRTC (819) 994-0294

[1] In this context, competitor network presence is as defined in Decision 2007-35.

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Date Modified: 2007-11-13
Date modified: