Analysis and Critique of Telecommunications Policy in the Emerging Situation
Licensing is a potent and flexible instrument in the hands of telecoms regulators. Many of the elements of telecoms policy have income and welfare distribution effects that need to be considered along with their efficiency results. On the whole, the expansion of the capacity of the telecoms network, technological change that leads to diversification through new forms such as e-mail, facsimile, and cable broadcasting, will enhance lateral communication and inhibit central control of broadcast forms. Regulatory regimes for telecoms have traditionally involved some form of rate or earnings regulation. Thus far, the telecommunications authorities in the ex-USSR seem to have given rate regulation a low priority. Telecommunications officials within the CIS seem to have had more success in working together than national actors in some other areas of CIS activity. The ministry does intend "to permit within wide limits competition, privatization, and development of commercial service networks by joint stock companies."