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INTERNET COSTS SET TO HALVE BY 2002

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Gordon Brown, the chancellor, will today announce plans to halve the cost of internet use by 2002, reports The Fina...
Gordon Brown, the chancellor, will today announce plans to halve the cost of internet use by 2002, reports The Financial Times (p1).

Mr Brown says he is concerned that high telephone charges meant British companies lagged behind the Americans in e-commerce.

He hopes to achieve his aim by opening up British Telecommunications' 'local loop' - the wires that run into homes and businesses - to greater competition.

David Emonds, director general of the telecoms regulator Oftel, has agreed a plan to open the local loop to BT's competitors by 1 July 2001. Mr Brown said yesterday that he had agreed with Oftel to bring that date forward.
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