5G, International Roaming and Net Neutrality: BEREC holds a debriefing on important documents for the European Electronic Communications Market
14 March 2018
Today a public debriefing was held by the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) in Brussels, Belgium. BEREC Chair 2018, Johannes Gungl, presented the outcomes of the 34th BEREC Plenary Meetings. In his introduction he highlighted the focus areas for 2018 – displayed visually in the latest BEREC video. He laid special emphasis on a study on 5G, the latest data on International Roaming and a consultation paper regarding Net Neutrality.
Enabling 5G: Implications of deployment and future business models
BEREC has made 5G a strategic priority for the next three years. It underlines this fact with a study commissioned by BEREC and conducted by DotEcon and Axon. From today, this 5G study is available for download on BEREC’s website.
Gungl explained: “The goal is to contribute to the removal of potential hurdles for a smooth deployment of 5G in Europe.” With this said the study shows that the realisation of 5G use cases will be a step-by-step process. Many potential use cases are currently at very early stages of development.
In order to better understand current and future network security issues BEREC held a workshop on 5G and “Internet of Things”. It was organized in cooperation with the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA).
Latest data: RLAH significantly contributes to the single market
BEREC, for the first time, is presenting data on the impact of „Roam Like At Home“ (RLAH). It shows the effects on the markets in terms of volumes, revenues and wholesale rates.
The report reveals a substantial increase of data volumes in the EEA. Data volumes increased by 435% in the period from Q3 2016 to Q3 2017. The average consumption per month per subscriber in the EEA in Q3 2017 was 242 MB.
Less significant is the increase of volumes in voice and SMS services. The report shows that the number of minutes of calls made per month per roaming customer increased from 8.8 minutes in Q3 2016 to 14.23 minutes in Q3 2017.
“Although international roaming services demonstrate high seasonality, the results clearly indicate that the 2015 amendment of the Roaming Regulation has significantly contributed to the development of the single market”, Gungl said.
Stakeholder Engagement: Evaluating the Net Neutrality Rules
Best practice learning among the National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) and stakeholder engagement are crucial parts of BEREC’s work. So this plenary meeting was used to discuss ongoing Net Neutrality cases. This is vital for a consistent application of the rules across the EU.
Now again, BEREC is reaching out to all its stakeholders via public consultation. This time the aim is to collect information for BEREC’s input to the Commission’s Evaluation of the Net Neutrality Regulation. The consultation paper consists of a series of open questions to the stakeholders on definitions, zero-rating practices, traffic management, specialised services, transparency and new technologies. Of special interest to BEREC is how stakeholders view Net Neutrality Rules in the context of 5G.
The public consultation is envisaged to run from 14 March 2018 until 25 April 2018. Contributions are encouraged through the BEREC online public consultation platform. The results will be prepared for Plenary 4 2018, in December, for adoption for publication and as formal input to the European Commission.
Regulatory framework review: BEREC’s expertise on Intra-EU Calls and its view on the Peer Review process
BEREC recently published a preliminary analysis on the matter of intra-European Union (intra-EU) calls with a view to feeding the ongoing discussions on the European Electronic Communications Code (EECC). It will continue the analysis and will come up with additional analyses by the end of April.
Regarding the Peer Review process, BEREC recently learnt that due to the outcome of the latest trilogue discussions it will not have a formal role in the peer review on award procedures. BEREC Chair Johannes Gungl says: “I regret this development and would like to reiterate that National Regulatory Authorities have and should have an important role on market shaping aspects of spectrum management.” According to Gungl it is important to acknowledge that both, BEREC, with its role in the functioning of the electronic communications markets, and the Radio Spectrum Policy Group, concerned with spectrum management in general, have a part to play based on their respective areas of expertise.
A full list of public documents adopted at the plenary meetings is available on the BEREC website. The next BEREC plenary meetings will be held in Gdańsk-Sopot, Poland on 13-15 June 2018.
A video recording from this public debriefing is available on the BEREC YouTube channel.