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Working paper / Communications and Media

Technology Investment and Alternative Regulatory Regimes with Demand Uncertainty

Author(s): SILVESTRI Virginia, CAMBINI Carlo

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ABSTRACT

A vertically integrated incumbent and an OLO (Other Licensed Operator) dynamically compete in the market for broadband access. The incumbent has the option to invest in building a Next Generation Network that covers all urban areas with similar demand structures. The investment return in terms of demand increase is uncertain. We compare the impact of different access price regulation regimes - full regulation, partial regulation (only the copper network is regulated), risk sharing - on investment incentives and social welfare. We find that, compared to Foros (2004), the OLO gets better access condition in case of partial regulation and exclusion does not necessarily happen in equilibrium even if the incumbent has more ability than the OLO. Moreover, risk sharing emerges as the most preferable regime both from a consumer and a social welfare perspective for a large range of parameters.