Telecommunications Council: EU Member States agree with the aim to achieve telecom single market as long as it is properly regulated

Date

2013 12 05

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Telecommunications Council: EU Member States agree with the aim to achieve telecom single market as long as it is properly regulated
Telecommunications Council: EU Member States agree with the aim to achieve telecom single market as long as it is properly regulated
In the orientation debate the deliberations by Member States made a substantial contribution to the further progress with regard to the Commission’s Proposal on the Connected Continent Regulation, which aims to provide measures that will fundamentally change the current legal framework of telecommunications and create a single EU market. Member States also exchanged views on the related aspects highlighted by the European Council.
 
The debate showed that the Member States agree with the importance of addressing a series of issues, such as incentives to investment, red-tape for operators, efficient allocation of radio-spectrum, access to networks, rights of end-users and net neutrality. It seems also that for a number of these issues, e.g. spectrum or roaming, irrespective of the possible added-value of some provisions of the proposed Regulation, there is the shared sentiment that instruments under the existing regulatory framework are not used to their full potential. Member States raised concerns that the balance between the interests of all stakeholders is not yet achieved and the consolidation that might result from the proposal could harm some markets and operators.
 
Even though the Council does not call for a detailed regulatory framework initiatives in the fields of Cloud Computing and Big Data, these areas are generally seen as worth supporting at EU level as long as the setting of minimum conditions does not impede market development. Member States also expressed concerns with respect to the Data protection element in these fields as well as to the need to improve digital skills in Europe.
 
“All in all, the debate provided useful elements of guidance for future work. On that basis we will reflect with our Greek partners how to move this important proposal forward, giving it the time it deserves for proper consideration,” said Minister of Transport and Communications of Lithuania Rimantas Sinkevičius.
Lithuanian Presidency informed the Council about the progress made on legislative work. The delegations were briefed on the state of play of negotiations with the co-legislator on Regulation on e-identification and trust services. In addition, progress reports were presented on the Directive of network and information security and the Regulation on measures to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communications networks.
 
“We are pleased that the agreement with the European Parliament on Regulation on guidelines for trans-European Telecommunications networks was reached during the Lithuanian presidency. The agreement on this Regulation was one of key Presidency’s priorities,” said Minister R. Sinkevičius.