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TIA TESTIFIES BEFORE THE HOUSE SUBCOMMITTEE ON ECONOMIC AND COMMERCIAL LAW

 WASHINGTON, Feb. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- In testimony delivered this morning, Allen R. "Mike" Frischkorn Jr., president of the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), advocated lifting the MFJ manufacturing restriction on a phased basis as competition develops in the local telephone exchange.
 Appearing before the U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Economic and Commercial Law, Frischkorn expressed his concerns with the Brooks/Dingell bill, H.R. 3626, The Antitrust and Communications Reform Act, stating, "As we fashion a legislative replacement for the consent decree, we should be ever mindful of the anti-competitive conduct which gave rise to the MFJ in the first place."
 Since divestiture, the telecommunications equipment marketplace has become extremely competitive. Today consumers have an enormous array of products and services from which to choose, and because of competition, the prices for those products and services have declined dramatically.
 In commenting on specific aspects of H.R. 3626, Frischkorn stressed the critical need for Congress to establish an explicit linkage between removal of the MFJ's manufacturing restriction and legislation removing barriers to competition in the provision of local telecommunications services by acting on the Markey/Fields bill, H.R. 3636 (The National Communications Competition and Information Infrastructure Act) and H.R. 3626 in tandem.
 Frischkorn stated, "In order to create a level playing field in the local loop, the enactment of a 'waiting period' is crucial to allow some time for the local exchange to become competitive, to protect against the possibility for anti-competitive behavior by the BOCs when the manufacturing restriction is lifted."
 In addition, Frischkorn argued for "procedural parity" similar to that given long distance companies under H.R. 3626 and for a prohibition on joint R&D and manufacturing between RBOCs until a competitive local service market evolves.
 Finally, Frischkorn concluded his concerns by strongly opposing the domestic content clause contained in Title II of H.R. 3626. "Not only can this be construed as a blatant violation of the NAFTA and the GATT, but it is simply a poor means for promoting market opportunities and job creation in an industry with significant demand for growth in global competition."
 TIA looks forward to working with Congress to improve H.R. 3626, thereby enhancing the manufacturing community's willingness to support this legislation.
 TIA is a full-service trade organization with membership of more than 550, including large and small companies, which provide telecommunications materials, products, systems, distribution services and professional services to the United States and countries around the world. TIA represents the telecommunication industry in association with the Electronic Industries Association.
 -0- 2/10/94
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: For a copy of Frischkorn's testimony, please call the contact below./
 /CONTACT: Kathy N. Hammond of the Telecommunications Industry Association, 202-457-4935/


CO: Telecommunications Industry Association ST: District of Columbia IN: TLS SU: LEG

IH-KD -- DC010 -- 1671 02/10/94 11:03 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 10, 1994
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