LLU Progress Disappointing

The Office of the Telecommunications Adjudicator (OTA) update for September 2005 has revealed that the number of Unbundled Lines now exceeds 123000; the current run rate of lines provisioned is approximately 4000 per week.

However the operational problems reported over the last couple of months continue to persist and are giving significant cause for concern. Current poor performance is being caused by a combination of automation instability, poor software problem handling, volume growth and resource shortfalls. This has led to an overall deterioration in the quality of delivery.

Steve Robertson, CEO of openreach, has assured OTA he is reviewing the overall situation and is giving the operational and IT issues his highest priority. Robertson has already taken action to increase systems capacity and operational resource levels as well as increasing the focus on systems availability. After many months of steady progress BT, the OTA and the LLUOs are disappointed at the current setbacks and are focussed on getting back on track.

Peter Black, the Telecommunications Adjudicator commented, “I am pleased that we have reached 123,000 lines; however the operational problems the industry are experiencing confirm there is still some way to go before we consolidate the market breakthrough we all aspire to. However; given the strong assurances from Steve Robertson and his team, I remain confident that the industry will deliver LLU successfully. We look forward to openreach enabling a step-up in focus and widening of capability on the delivery of LLU and the Systems to support the industry’s success.”

The Telecommunications Adjudicator is independent of regulator and industry and has been established to facilitate swift implementation of the processes necessary to enable competitors to gain access to BT’s local loop on an equivalent basis to that enjoyed by BT’s own businesses. The Telecommunications Adjudicator will also be able to bring all parties together to find a prompt mediated resolution of working-level implementation disputes.

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