A group of European ISPs met to set up a consortium of bandwidth brokers last week, with the aim of reducing telecoms costs, which would also cut Internet access costs.
At the EuroISPA (European Internet Service Providers Association) conference in Brussels, members of a workshop met to discuss plans to form a co-operative of ISPs to buy up bandwidth from a broker or alternative carrier, to reduce telecoms costs. Chaired by EuroISPA's newly-appointed president Jim Dixon, it was one of three workshops which took place last Friday.
ISPs and telecom managers frequently complain of the disparity in telecoms pricing between EU countries, and the high prices charged for traffic across borders.
Representatives of EuroISPA pointed out that while American ISPs pay nothing for international connectivity, Europeans pay large monthly sums for theirs. A typical European ISP will pay more than twenty times as much for inter-city bandwidth as an American one.
Other workshops at the conference discussed regulations and legal approaches, looking at how to reduce costs by using European Union laws and regulations to break monopolistic barriers which keep prices high. A technical approaches workshop focused on the way wireless techniques could be deployed.
The conference was attended by approximately 100 delegates from across Europe. Representatives from the telecoms industry and politicians were also present.
EuroISPA was established three years ago to represent and promote the needs of European ISPs, and has more than 80 members. Among its UK members are BT, Cable & Wireless, Global Internet, ICL, Planet Online, Uunet and Which Online.
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