Washington, D.C. -- The merger of AT&T and T-Mobile will create as many as 96,000 new, quality jobs, accelerate broadband build out, and improve wireless communications and innovation, the Communications Workers of America said today in a filing submitted to the Federal Communications Commission.
On Quality Jobs
A new analysis by the Economic Policy Institute shows that the merger will create about 12,000 quality jobs per billion dollars invested in a wireless network. This means that the additional $8 billion in capital expenditures that AT&T has committed to invest in wireless broadband buildout will create up to 96,000 jobs. These jobs include work in building the network, manufacture of equipment and other jobs directly related to the wireless buildout. In addition, there will be thousands more jobs created through expansion of broadband-enabled services and energy savings. Read the EPI report at www.epi.org.
On Broadband Buildout
High speed Internet is essential to economic competitiveness, job creation, and quality of life. But these benefits remain beyond the grasp of tens of millions of Americans without an accelerated buildout of true high speed broadband.
As a result of the merger, AT&T promises to deploy next-generation wireless service to more than 97 percent of the country. AT&T’s commitment of an additional $8 billion investment for buildout over seven years, plus the compatibility of the combined AT&T and T-Mobile spectrum and wireless assets, means that 55 million more people will have access to 4G LTE service than prior to the transaction.
For residents of rural areas, whose futures in large part depend on the creation of sustainable communities connected to the rest of the world by broadband, this is a life changing development.
On Improving Wireless Communications and Ensuring Competition
How regulators define the wireless market is critical, and a new study by economist and Duke University professor Leslie Marx stresses that consumers make their purchase decisions based on their local markets. Many of these markets have five or more wireless competitors. And depending on how regulators classify some competitors, for example Clearwire, the number of competitors will likely increase.
A stand-alone T-Mobile is not an option for the future. Deutsche Telekom announced that it was seeking to sell T-Mobile USA, and in testimony to the U.S. Senate Judiciary subcommittee on antitrust, competition policy and consumer rights, T-Mobile’s U.S. chief executive officer Phillip Humm made clear that DT “is not in a position to finance the necessary large scale investments for T-Mobile to remain competitive.”
Without a 4G network, this is no future for T-Mobile, its customers or its employees. Because AT&T has the financial resources to develop T-Mobile’s assets and because AT&T and T-Mobile utilize compatible technologies, AT&T can offer T-Mobile customers the latest in technology and innovation. The U.S. wireless market is highly competitive today. This will not go away after an AT&T/T-Mobile merger.
Overall, this merger, with regulatory oversight, will be a positive development for high speed broadband buildout, quality jobs, innovation and consumer benefits and in maintaining competition.
The Communications Workers of America represents more than 700,000 workers in telecommunications, media, public sector, manufacturing, health care and airlines.