EMERG ANNUAL REPORT – RECOMMENDATIONS 2017
In 2017 AGCOM, the Italian Regulatory Authority for the electronic communication sector, took over the Presidency of the European Mediterranean Regulators Group (hereinafter referred to as “EMERG”), having been appointed during the 2016 Plenary meeting in Sharm el Sheik (Egypt).
The Annual report is going through all the activities undertaken during 2017, in line with the mission and the remit of the Group, as stated in the EMERG Charter. In particular, in each workshop the participants agreed on recommendations for the Members States to promote the approximation to the European regulatory framework and best practices among its Members.
1. Workshop on Licensing and Auctions
Improve Licensing System
The governments and authorities should take into consideration a review of the current licensing systems with a possible switch to a general authorization system, where possible. Conditions may be specific to every country as concerns the use of scarce resources and explicit public interest goals.
2. EMERG Workshop on Broadband strategies and Universal Service Obligations
Update Broadband Strategies
All EMERG members should encourage the elaboration of a national broadband strategy with the objective to accelerate broadband network deployment and broadband service usage over and above the purely market driven level. Strategies should include appropriate financing instruments.
Improve Universal Service System
EMERG members are encouraged to further develop their universal service systems to include a minimum broadband access service offered to every citizen.
3. EMERG Workshop on Quality of Service and Consumer protection
Improve the Complaint Process
All EMERG members should improve consumer protection by implementing a consumer complaint unit and clearly defining a process on how customer complaints will be handled, including actions taken and publications.
Improve Transparency and consumer awareness
EMERG members should improve consumer rights by enforcing and publishing minimum standards for contracts between Telco Operators and retail customers. In particular, all EMERG members should publish minimum standards and KPIs to enforce the consumer rights when changing the access provider.
Improve Services for elderly and disabled people
The EMERG members should encourage service providers to improve standards for emergency calls, special services and harmonize specific low price offers for disabled and elderly people.
4. EMERG Workshop on OTT, Cross Border Content Portability, Big Data and Key Market Indicators
OTT market access
Within the EMERG region an ex-ante regulatory approach for OTT’s voice services terminated on license networks and an ex-post regulatory approach for OTTs entering the markets should be adopted. Number based OTT communication services are to be monitored if they should be regulated in a comparable way as licensed telecommunications services, particularly in the field of consumer protection rights.
OTTs and market assessment
EMERG member NRAs should have the power to analyze the impact of OTTs on existing competition conditions and the possible distortive effects steaming from differentiated regulatory treatment. If the market assessment shows distortions, it is suggested that NRAs have the powers to apply suitable remedies also on OTTs.
Big Data usage
EMERG member NRAs should set up regulatory framework in order to be able to use big data delivered by telecommunications operators with an aim to improve the quality of services provided to the end users. NRAs should initiate in EMERG countries the development of a strategy for data driven economy, in co-operation with other national institutions.
5. EMERG – BEREC Workshop on NGN and Network Sharing and Local Loop Unbundling
Facilitate co-invest and other sharing models
Within the EMERG region access to passive infrastructure is important for the development of, and investments in NGN networks and hence, the national regulators should consider to facilitate infrastructure sharing by adapting the regulation to facilitate co-invest and other sharing models. For mobile RAN high level value chain sharing (including spectrum sharing) may be restricted to low-density regions.
Improve in-building Standardization
EMERG member NRAs should consider the necessity of standardization of in-building infrastructure as a measure to reduce the costs of deployment of NGN and fiber networks ant to achieve an easy customer choice between operators and individual services.
Adapt regulated wholesale access to NGN
EMERG member NRAs should adapt the access regulation including access obligations and reference offers to the technological development in each country, taking VULA, Fibre unbundling and duct access into consideration.