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Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
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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 10, 2001
Contact: David Fiske
(202) 418-0513


Washington - FCC Chairman Michael Powell said he met today with the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of a dozen small to mid-size competitive local exchange telephone carriers (CLECs) for a "wide-ranging discussion of their attempts to provide competitive telephone service in markets around the country. It was a very positive meeting that I feel was beneficial to all participants," he said.

Powell said he has previously met individually with CLEC CEOs throughout his four-years as a Commissioner, but that he felt at this time it would be particularly important to bring a number of them together for a comprehensive dialogue on CLEC problems and opportunities.

Powell said the general subject for the meeting was "the fundamentals of the CLEC industry and the challenges they face," with the discussion agenda including a number of specific topics, including:

* what has worked and what has not worked in terms of CLEC market entry;

* what issues relate to the successes or failures of CLEC access to capital markets;

* to what extent CLEC success or failure can be attributed to business/market decisions as compared to policy/regulatory decisions,

* what is necessary for the CLEC industry to succeed

* are there any technological limitations that pose challenges to the success of the CLEC industry; and

* what, if anything, can the FCC do, consistent with the law and principled economics, to support local communications competition beyond what it has already done.

Powell said, "This was an outstanding opportunity for a frank dialogue on various issues surrounding the central question of what needs to be done for CLECs to fulfill the goal of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and bring effective competition to local phone markets."

- FCC -