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Ofcom to set sail in December
Oftel - the UK's telecoms regulator - will cease to exist from December 15 2003 [tear slides down face, lip trembles under weight of emotion,..Ed]
That's because it will be replaced by new super communications regulator, Ofcom, which takes over from five regulators from this date.
The actual timetable for the transfer of powers is currently being discussed but it's expected that full powers will be transferred by the end of the year.
Ofcom chief exec Stephen Carter said he expects everyone working for Ofcom to be at their desks and ready to go from December 15.
Said Carter in a statement: "When Ofcom is fully formed our statutory responsibilities will include the importance of creating and promoting a dynamic communications market, underpinned by limited and effective intervention through a constructive and mutually respectful relationship with stakeholders.
"Ofcom will also be a 'reach out' regulator that embraces consumer protection through the promotion of effective competition and choice, whilst being informed by modern citizenship."