|reply to sonicmerlin |
Re: Price is good when accounting for relative income levels
"Prior to 1993 the Swedish state controlled incumbent was the public service corporation Televerket. Although the Swedish market has never protected a legal monopoly, Televerket was for a long time the only provider of public voice telecommunications services in Sweden. In 1993, the government transformed Televerket from a state-owned public utility into a limited company and changed its name to Telia AB. In June 2000, the Swedish state sold 30 per cent of Telia shares in an initial public offering.
In December 2002, Telia merged with Finnish telco Sonera to form TeliaSonera. The merger brought together two of the leading telecom operators in Scandinavia and resulted in the formation of a leading telecommunications group in the Nordic and Baltic regions with strong market positions also in Eurasia, Russia and Turkey. In Q2 2007, the Swedish government sold an 8 per cent stake in TeliaSonera to institutional investors for SEK18 billion. The Swedish government is still the single biggest shareholder in the operator with a 37.3 per cent stake, while the Finnish government owns a 13.7 per cent stake."
In fact swedish telcom including FTTH exists only BECAUSE of govt investment and policy.
each time they sold a portion to private industry the proceeds were used to expand the plant rather than being return to the public coffers.
In esscents they gave away the govt owned telco in return for the (sales price) investment in the new govt mandated medium (first for DSL, now some FTTH (FTTH doesn't reach everywhere and won't for a long time without further investment)
In the US we had private companies build the telco system given exclusive rights and some govt subsidy in return for forfilling certain mandates (Universal service) and certain govt projects (largely military/the hardened comm systems for the coldwar. )
While I can't defend how the USF was run, much of the money mention was spent correctly, on early internet broadband efforts, ISDN, DSL, dark fiber, some/a lot of which has out lived is useful ness by the time the next phase was wide spread and demand arrived.