The European Commissioner, Neelie Kroes, has finally pushed through her plans for a single market for telecoms, after the measures were launched on Wednesday by Commission President José Manuel Barroso in his 2013 State of the Union speech, the “Connected Continent.”
The main elements of the reform package are a single “authorisation” for the European Union’s 28 member states to simplify and reduce regulation, the gradual elimination of roaming charges, the adoption of net neutrality (under certain conditions), new consumer rights across Europe, the coordinated assignment of spectrum across the EU and more certainty for investors in order to increase investment levels. Also included are plans to have standardised wholesale products for fixed-line operators, including virtual unbundled local access, bitstream access and Ethernet leased lines).
A single regulator is not included in the proposals, and nor are there plans for pan-European spectrum licenses. Also the definition of an “electronic communication services” provider was not changed.
All of the provisions will likely face a difficult path ahead in the European Parliament, which must turn the proposals into law.
INTERNATIONAL REGULATORY COMPLIANCE SERVICES
In partnership with The CommLaw Group, Erik De Herdt and Aztec Consult (a global information technology legal & regulatory consultancy) provide U.S. and multi-national enterprise clients with international market entry, licensure and regulatory/legal compliance advisory counsel. Erik is counsel and managing partner of Aztec Consult, located in Brussels, Belgium. He possesses over 12 years experience in virtually all aspects of international communications & technology law and regulation serving executive officers and cross functional teams in cloud communication providers, telecom operators, technology enterprises and information service providers.
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