Gov't cancels TV provider after EU threat

BRUSSELS — Swedish digital terrestrial TV provider Boxer has lost the exclusive right to control DTT broadcasting in the country.

The Swedish government, which part-owns Boxer through pubcaster Teracom, cancelled the monopoly under threat of legal action from the European Commission.

The commission announced Thursday that it would drop its case against Sweden at the European Court of Justice, which it lodged in October 2006.

Boxer builds, installs and maintains the encryption system for terrestrial digital broadcasting in Sweden, including distribution of the common access card.

This system was intended to be open but, according to the commission, it created a situation where Boxer was the only company that could provide encryption and distribution of DTT. The country has amended its legislation.

“The Swedish authorities need to ensure that the implementation of the new system also will lead to effective competition,” the commission concluded.

Boxer’s DTT network reaches 98% of Swedish households. At the end of March, Boxer had 709,000 digital TV subscribers.

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