March 2, 2015 / 9:49 AM / in 3 years

Deutsche Telekom boss calls for regulatory shift on web companies

BARCELONA (Reuters) - Deutsche Telekom Chief Executive Tim Hoettges called for web companies like Google and Facebook to be regulated since they offer communications services much as telecoms operators do.

Timotheus Hoettges, CEO of Germany's telecommunications giant Deutsche Telekom AG addresses the CyberSecurity summit in Bonn November 3, 2014. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

“There is a convergence between over-the-top web companies and classic telcos,” he said. “We need one level regulatory environment for us all.”

Hoettges spoke at Mobile World Congress on Monday where some 90,000 executives and delegates from the industry have gathered.

He added that if policy makers wanted telcos to invest then the regulatory burden on them should be lightened, in particular with a better spectrum policy.

Europe is also working on a net neutrality law, and Hoettges asked for policy makers to leave telecoms groups enough leeway to develop new services like connected cars and smart meters.

“We favor net neutrality, but we need to be allowed to have quality classes to enable new services in the Internet of Things,” he said.

Reporting by Leila Abboud; Editing by Harro Ten Wolde

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