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The spokesman for Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia refuted, on 10 January, allegations that the commissioner had discussed with leading European operators the possibility of setting up a pan-European telecommunications network. He added that the commissioner "neither initiated, suggested or endorsed any plans by these operators to pool their infrastructure or share their networks. [...] As the competition authority, the Commission always assesses effects on competition on a case-by-case basis, in line with applicable rules and procedures".

The day before, The Financial Times reported that major telecoms operators were opening talks on setting up a single network that would enable them to cut their infrastructure costs. The idea was allegedly discussed at a meeting they held with the competition commissioner.

The meeting of 28 November...

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