Association of Telecommunications and Value-Added Service Providers (VATM)
The VATM represents more than ninety telecommunications and multimedia companies active in the German market. All of them compete with the ex-monopolist Deutsche Telekom AG. The Association represents about 80 percent of the private service providers in this sector by revenue. Since 1998 competitors made investments of more than 45 billion €. Since 2002, they made significantly more than 50 per cent of the total investments in the market annually. In Germany they secure directly over 53.500 jobs. The Association seeks to create competitive conditions that will provide all participants in the market with a fair chance to succeed, and to operate in a stable regulatory framework and investment climate. A significant function of the VATM is the public presentation of the common interests of its member companies. Its demands on policymakers and regulators as well as its comments and interpretations of decisions relevant to the market are conveyed via regular press releases. Its analyses of the telecommunications markets as well as various studies of specific problem areas further improve and sensitize the general public for the situation of the competitive carriers. Its offices in Brussels and Berlin enable the Association to intensify the necessary dialogue with relevant institutions and political decision makers.
Our contact institutions are, among others:
- The Federal Economics Ministry,
- The Federal Chancellery,
- The Regulatory Authority (RegTP),
- The Federal Cartel Office,
- The EU Commission, as well as
- the parties in Parliament.
It also maintains valuable contacts through a renowned law firm in Washington DC to the US regulator and to important politicians in the economic sector.
The VATM invests in the expertise of its members
In a rapidly developing industry like telecommunications, successful companies depend significantly on being timely and comprehensively informed of impending changes and thus being able to respond to them quickly. VATM supports the economic activities of its members through the implementation and coordination of regularly scheduled working groups with respect to nearly all relevant areas of the telecommunications market. Participation in any working groups of interest is open to any VATM member.
The working groups currently active are:
- Laws and Regulations
- Press and Publicity
- Safety and data protection
- Training and personnel
Within the next years, the main focus of the Association’s European policy will be on the deployment of fiber networks. To build up the infrastructure it will be crucial:
- to provide planning reliability to ensure investments. This implies equal, technology neutral access to all relevant network elements,
- a fast, flexible and decentralized build-out by all market players and thereby preventing a remonopolisation of the market
- risk sharing and a risk premium for investors, provided that all investors may benefit equally from it.