In order to ensure fair and functioning competition on the telecommunications market, the Austrian legislature has assigned specific duties in the field of competition regulation to the regulatory authorities for telecommunications. In this context, the main priority is to ensure that the population and the business world are provided with reasonably priced, high-quality and innovative telecommunications services. This is achieved by lowering barriers to market entry for new providers, carrying out market analyses, ensuring open network access, and acting as a conciliation body in disputes between market participants, to name just a few examples.
In order to enable competition between alternative service providers and companies with significant market power (SMP) on the relevant markets defined in the course of a market analysis procedure, the regulatory authority can subject SMP companies to an obligation to provide access to their telecommunications networks and to unbundled parts thereof on the basis of a market analysis under Art. 36, 37 TKG 2003. At the same time, Art. 48 TKG 2003 stipulates that every operator of a public communications network is obliged to provide other operators of such networks with an interconnection offer upon request.