SEATTLE, July 1, 2002 ? Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE:Q) today received the endorsement of the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) to re-enter the long-distance market. The UTC?s endorsement confirms that the local service market in Washington is open to competition and that Qwest has complied with all of the requirements of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Qwest is expected to file an application with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to re-enter the long-distance market in Washington by mid-July. Qwest expects to receive approval within 90 days of filing the application with the FCC.
?This is a great day for customers in Washington and for Qwest,? said Kirk Nelson, Qwest vice president of policy and law for Washington. ?The UTC and its staff determined our markets are open to competition after conducting a thorough, fair and comprehensive review, and we should be allowed to compete in the long-distance market. This decision means Washingtonians will soon save $150 million annually on their local and long-distance bills.?
With today?s endorsement, six state commissions have now endorsed Qwest?s re-entry into the long-distance market. Qwest filed long-distance applications with the FCC in Idaho, Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska and North Dakota. The company expects similar actions in other states over the next several weeks.
Qwest has spent in excess of $3 billion to open its markets to competitors and comply with the Telecommunications Act. In June, Qwest received the final report on the independent test of its systems and performance that demonstrates its excellence in providing wholesale service to customers. The test ? the most thorough and comprehensive ever conducted ? covered 13 of the 14 states in Qwest?s local service territory and was conducted by regulators from throughout those states. Qwest has also passed a separate and comparable systems test in Arizona.
A study by Professor Jerry A. Hausman, director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Telecommunications Economics Research Program, found that residential customers in Wyoming will save an average of up to $113 per residential customer. The same study found residential customers in Washington will save an average of up to $73 per residential customer. After Qwest is approved to re-enter the long-distance business, the company will be able to provide customers with another choice for long-distance service, as well as offer bundled services and the convenience of a single bill.
When Qwest acquired U S WEST, the company had to divest itself of its long-distance operations in the 14 western states where U S WEST provided local service. Under the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Qwest can re-enter the long-distance business once its application to the FCC has been approved.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leader in reliable, scalable and secure broadband data, voice and image communications for businesses and consumers. The Qwest Macro Capacity® Fiber Network, designed with the newest optical networking equipment for speed and efficiency, spans more than 190,000 miles globally. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.
This release may contain projections and other forward-looking statements that involve assumptions, risks and uncertainties. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these statements, which speak only as of the date of this release. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents filed by Qwest Communications International Inc. (together with its affiliates, ?Qwest?, ?we? or ?us?) with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the ?SEC?), specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, including but not limited to: the duration and extent of the current economic downturn in our 14-state local service area, including its effect on our customers and suppliers; any adverse outcome of the SEC?s current inquiries into Qwest?s accounting policies, practices and procedures; adverse results of increased review and scrutiny by regulatory authorities, media and others (including any internal analyses) of financial reporting issues and practices or otherwise; rapid and significant changes in technology and markets; failure to achieve the projected synergies and financial results expected to result from the acquisition of U S WEST, and difficulties in combining the operations of the combined company; our future ability to provide interLATA services within our 14-state local service area; potential fluctuations in quarterly results; volatility of Qwest?s stock price; intense competition in the markets in which we compete; changes in demand for our products and services; adverse economic conditions in the markets served by us or by companies in which we have substantial investments; dependence on new product development and acceleration of the deployment of advanced new services, such as broadband data, wireless and video services, which could require substantial expenditure of financial and other resources in excess of contemplated levels; higher than anticipated employee levels, capital expenditures and operating expenses; adverse changes in the regulatory or legislative environment affecting our business; adverse developments in commercial disputes or legal proceedings; and changes in the outcome of future events from the assumed outcome included by Qwest in its significant accounting policies. The information contained in this release is a statement of Qwest?s present intention, belief or expectation and is based upon, among other things, the existing regulatory environment, industry conditions, market conditions and prices, the economy in general and Qwest?s assumptions. Qwest may change its intention, belief or expectation, at any time and without notice, based upon any changes in such factors, in Qwest?s assumptions or otherwise. The cautionary statements contained or referred to in this release should be considered in connection with any subsequent written or oral forward looking statements that Qwest or persons acting on its behalf may issue. This release may include analysts? estimates and other information prepared by third parties for which Qwest assumes no responsibility. Qwest undertakes no obligation to review or confirm analysts? expectations or estimates or to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.The Qwest logo is a registered trademark of, and CyberCenter is a service mark of, Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.
The Qwest logo is a registered trademark of, and CyberCenter is a service mark of, Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.