The following statement is attributable to Qwest Communications in response to today's action by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on the SBC-AT&T and Verizon-MCI mergers.
"Today, the FCC stood with millions of telecommunications users against two mega-firms trying to turn back the clock. By imposing meaningful conditions on the plans of SBC and Verizon to acquire their largest competitors, the FCC has reaffirmed its commitment to open and competitive telecommunications markets.
"While we have yet to see the details of the order, it appears that the FCC has imposed critical protections that will prevent the two mega-firms from increasing the prices or decreasing the quality of essential services they provide to competitors. The FCC also made it clear that discrimination by these two firms against their competitors won't be tolerated. And, the FCC prohibited the two firms from imposing unreasonable restrictions that prevent customers from transferring service to competitive facilities. These three actions will increase the likelihood that other firms will be able to fill the competitive gap created by the elimination of AT&T and MCI from the competitive landscape.
"Consumers should applaud those on the FCC who today stood up for competition and open markets."
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leading provider of high-speed Internet, data, video and voice services. With approximately 40,000 employees, Qwest is committed to the "Spirit of Service" and providing world-class services that exceed customers' expectations for quality, value and reliability. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.