The FTTH Council Europe has urged European leaders to devise a single, unified plan for the switch-off of the EU’s copper telecommunications networks

European leaders must come together to formulate a single, codified strategy for copper network switch off, according to a new industry report.

Published by WIK Consult, the Copper Switch Off report highlighted the disparity between attitudes to copper switch off among EU member states.  

“This study about copper switch-off is of tremendous importance for the FTTH Council Europe. The telecom market is in a transitional phase, it is moving from an old copper-based infrastructure to new fibre-based networks. There is a technology change and all eyes are on 5G but we should not forget that fibre is the foundation of all technologies for connectivity. Policy is lagging behind the market developments, and it is important that it catches up.” explained Ronan Kelly, president of the FTTH Council Europe.

Speaking ahead of the FTTH Conference 2019 in Amsterdam, the FTTH Council Europe’s director general, Erzsébet Fitori, said that European leaders needed to ensure that they were on the same page, when it came to copper network switch off.

“We believe that Europe needs a single market strategy for the migration process and the ultimate switch-off of copper, therefore a European level debate on the fate of copper is needed.” added Erzsébet Fitori, Director General of the FTTH Council Europe.” Our study is aimed to be a discussion starter and to bring together policy makers, copper network owners, new fibre investors and consumers to approach constructively this complex topic. Europe needs new fibre infrastructure and a very constructive dialogue amongst stakeholders. We are a keen platform for such a debate.”