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BT to cut ribbon on new access division

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BT looks set to reveal the identity of its new Access Services Division (ASD) today as part of a regulatory settlement with Ofcom.

Details of the new organisation - which will be staffed by around 30,000 workers - are to be revealed today along with the organisation's name and new livery.

BT agreed to create the ASD as part of a deal with Ofcom not to press ahead with an investigation that could have led to the enforced break-up of BT.

Instead, the ASD - or whatever its name is - will provide telecoms access products such as line rental and local loop unbundling (LLU) on an "equal basis" to all telcos including BT Retail.

In the past, rival operators have argued that BT Retail - which has some 18m phone customers - was given preferential treatment by other parts of the BT organisation at the expense of others.

Under the new regime all telecoms operators will have access to the same products, prices and back office processes "to ensure all providers are able to order, install, maintain and migrate connections for their customers on equal terms".

The move is seen as key to increased competition in the UK's telecoms sector. ®

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