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Euronews: Steely Neelie's Copper Clampdown

Steely Neelie has a cunning copper plan, Orange (NYSE: FTE) makes another African foray and Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) wins a 100G deal in Russia in today's roundup of EMEA headlines.

  • Neelie Kroes, the European Commission 's vice president for the Digital Agenda, is set to scare the pants off several large telcos today by floating a plan to reduce by law the amount of money they can make from sharing or "unbundling" their copper networks, reports the Financial Times. Her hope, which will be expressed at a telecom conference in Brussels, is that this will encourage them to invest in fiber rather than carry on just milking their copper assets. (See Brakes Stuck on Europe's FTTH Ride, Steely Neelie's FTTX Face Off and Europe's Broadband Challenge.)

  • France Telecom is continuing its strategy of looking way beyond Europe for its future growth with the acquisition of a 49 percent share in Congo Chine Telecom sarl. , a mobile operator in the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, reports Reuters. Chinese vendor ZTE Corp. (Shenzhen: 000063; Hong Kong: 0763) currently owns a 51 percent stake in the operator. (See Euronews: France Telecom to Sell Euro Assets, FT Looks to Sell Swiss Biz and Euronews: France Telecom Outlines Masterplan.)

  • Russian carrier Rostelecom is deploying AlcaLu's coherent 100Gbit/s technology, housed in its 1830 Photonic Service Switch, to add capacity to its long-haul network that runs down to the Middle East. The vendor announced another European 100Gbit/s deal only last week. (See Rostelecom Does 100G With AlcaLu and 100G Watch: The Ramp-Up Continues.)

  • Bulgaria is looking to bring a fourth mobile operator onto the market with the launch of a tender for an additional UMTS license, reports Reuters. Bulgaria's existing mobile operators -- MobilTel (M-Tel) , GloBul and Vivacom -- are all foreign-owned.

  • Orange Business Services (OBS) has expanded its cloud services portfolio with the launch of Flexible SSL, a security-as-a-service offering with service level agreements (SLAs) for enterprise users that is underpinned by Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR)'s Junos Pulse network client software. Another of OBS's cloud services applications has just been shortlisted in Light Reading's annual Leading Lights awards in the Best New Service or Application (Telecom) category. (See Light Reading's 2011 Leading Lights Finalists.)

  • The government of Bahrain is taking time out from locking up doctors and nurses to launch its third National Telecoms Plan, reports AME Info. It is expected to be completed by mid-December.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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