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Federal Communications Commission
1919 - M Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
News media information 202 / 418-0500
Fax-On-Demand 202 / 418-2830
Internet: http://www.fcc.gov

This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).

July 19, 1997


The merger conditions proposed today by Bell Atlantic and NYNEX would bring enforceable, pro-competitive, market opening terms to the whole Bell Atlantic/NYNEX region in a way that offsets the loss of Bell Atlantic as a potential competitor to NYNEX. Based on these conditions, I personally believe we can and should approve the merger as in the public interest.

These commitments by Bell Atlantic/Nynex will guarantee for the whole region fair prices for interconnection, improve the core operational mechanism necessary to have competition, make those operational mechanisms uniform throughout the Bell Atlantic/NYNEX region, and give new entrants the tools they need to negotiate performance standards with Bell Atlantic and NYNEX, as well as to monitor and enforce those standards. The proposed reporting requirements will also strengthen the ability of the Commission and the state commissions to verify, test, and enforce non-discrimination rules. The conditions would sunset after four years, which I believe is a reasonable time to see whether they will succeed in allowing competition to take root as a counterbalance to the merger.

In September, we will convene a Bell Atlantic/NYNEX regional state-FCC forum to examine state-federal cooperation in promoting competition in telecommunications markets. Today's announcement by Bell Atlantic and NYNEX demonstrates that our commitment to competition is both reasonable and achievable.