Last September the European Commission proposed a new legislative package "Connected Continent: Building a Telecoms Single Market" aimed at building a connected, competitive continent and enabling sustainable digital jobs and industries.
The proposal has been supported in the IMCO committee earlier this year and is about to be voted in the ITRE committee on 18 March. The plenary vote is planned for the European Parliament’s mini-plenary in April.
EIF hosted this timely debate bringing together policy-makers, regulators and industry representatives to exchange views and provide insights.
The debate was initiated by Pilar del Castillo MEP, EIF chair and the proposal’s Rapporteur for the ITRE committee. In her opening remarks she presented the current state of play and elaborated on the amendments that are being considered at the ITRE committee.
Listen to Pilar del Castillo’s opening speech:
Malcolm Harbour CBE, MEP, IMCO Committee Chair and Rapporteur for the proposal stressed benefits for the consumers that this proposal needs to bring. Mr Harbour called for the simplest legal solution for net neutrality. ‘Less is more when it comes to net neutrality’, he concluded.
Listen to Malcolm Harbour’s speech:
Roberto Viola, Deputy Director General at DG CONNECT European Commission, reviewed the intended benefits of the Commission’s Connected Continent proposal.
Listen to Roberto Viola’s speech:
Göran Marby, Chair of BEREC, the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications, noted that the telecom package is a great opportunity for Europe. He also asked to keep it simple when it comes to net neutrality, and trust Europe’s regulators.
Listen to Göran Marby’s speech:
Nicola Frank, Head of European Affairs at European Broadcasting Union, commented on the amendments to the proposal considered by the European Parliament.
Listen to Nicola Frank’s speech:
Pablo Pfost, Director of Corporate Regulatory Affairs at Telefonica, noted that in order to put Europe on the technology map, it is compulsory to complete the European Digital Single Market, invest in innovation, change an outdated regulatory framework and enable efficient market structures.
Listen to Pablo Pfost’s speech:
Stephen Lerner, General Counsel & Regulatory Affairs Director at Three UK, commented on the proposal to end roaming charges in Europe. He expressed support for this proposal, but called for also reducing wholesale prices.
Listen to Stephen Lerner’s speech:
Guillermo Beltrà, Senior Policy Officer at BEUC, was a first respondent, addressing the consumer issues in the telecom market. He noted where progress has been made with this package and identified what still needs to be done.
Listen to Guillermo Beltrà’s speech: