EC releases details for European telecoms reform

09 September 2013 | Kavit Majithia


The European Commission (EC) has released details of its telecom reform plans for Europe, which are due to be presented on September 11.

Neelie Kroes, Digital Agenda commissioner, has outlined terms for legislation aimed at creating a single market for telecoms services in the EU and potentially establishing a unified telecoms regulator for the entire continent.

The plans are designed to accelerate growth in the sector and promote confidence in Europe’s future as a leading developer of mobile technology.

As part of the proposals, the EC would increase its power to co-ordinate regulation in the sector and review plans for the release of national spectrums across different countries.

It would also force national regulators to withdraw rules that go against EU law.

Kroes claims the plans will ensure a range of benefits to consumers, including free calls when roaming within the EU, with the commissioner also keen to introduce EU-wide bundles. There could also be a decline in the price of fixed-line calls to other EU countries.

The EC is attempting to standardise wholesale broadband access regulation in the EU, as well as promote investment in the sector. It is also hoping to ensure the interests of OTT providers are considered when drafting new telecoms laws.

It further said it would encourage market players to release spectrum for broadband and set up a common set of rules of the use of spectrum.

In an attempt to promote competition, operators would also be allowed to share and trade spectrum.