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Ofcom has confirmed it intends to take its proposals for a legal separation of BT and Openreach to the European Commission this year.

The watchdog recently ordered BT to legally separate from Openreach, so it is run as a distinct and legally separate company with its own board.

Ofcom believes this is necessary as BT has not done enough to ease its concerns over competition, particularly its belief that BT has the "incentive and ability to favour its own retail business when making strategic decisions about new network investments by Openreach".

As part of an effort to improve its governance, Sir Brendan Barber, the Chairman of Acas, and former board member of the National Grid Edward Astle have been appointed as independent members of a newly-formed board.

They will be tasked with overseeing strategy, investment and service delivery at the organisation.

However, Ofcom is not convinced that this is enough, the Evening Standard reports.

"These changes fall short of our requirements for a legally separate Openreach that delivers for all of its customers," the watchdog said.

As a result, it intends to push its case for a reformed Openreach to the European Commission in the coming months.

Nevertheless, Openreach's new board appointments did get the backing of some observers, including the Communication Workers Union.

Andy Kerr, deputy general-secretary of the body, commented: "The CWU has been pushing for [BT] to appoint a worker representative to the new board of Openreach. 

"We are extremely pleased they have decided to appoint Sir Brendan Barber.”

Speaking after the board appointments were announced, Openreach Chairman Mike McTighe acknowledged its customers "sometimes feel let down", as it has not always delivered the service they expect or that it hopes to provide.

As a result, the organisation intends to focus heavily on rebuilding trust and credibility over the coming months.

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