The next Plenary Meeting takes place on 20th March 2018 in Cairo (Egypt) and is organised by the National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA).

In this Plenary Assembly Meeting the Benchmarking Report for 2017 and the Work Plan for 2018 will be discussed and approved. Moreover, measures and more formal steps needed to be taken to guarantee the selfsustainability will be discussed to secure the enhancement of EMERG’s development over time of EMERG in the future.


The EMERG/Contact network meeting is the preparatory meeting for the 2018 EMERG Activities for 2018.

According to the EMERG Charter, the Members have to discuss the following issues:

  • Discuss the yearly Benchmarking Report, and approve the draft to be presented to the Plenary Assembly;
  • Assess the implementation of the Work-plan and the recommendations and decisions adopted by the Plenary Assembly;
  • Ensure and plan the follow-up of these recommendations and decisions;
  • Discuss the tasks and rules of procedures of the Secretariat and propose modifications to the Plenary Assembly whenever necessary;
  • Follow up on the development, enhancement, and efficient utilization of EMERG website;
  • Study the issues of common interest likely to be the object of debates and discussions during the Plenary Assembly;
  • Propose any document to be approved and/or published to the Plenary Assembly;
  • Propose a draft agenda for the following Plenary Assembly.


In 2018 EMERG also will continue to discuss about EMERG sustainability, considering the outcomes of the Cascais declaration in 2017. The aim is to propose an action plan to the Commission at the Plenary in Cairo (Egypt) heading to a solution that can guarantee the future of the platform after 2019.

Besides, EMERG will collect proposals for the work plan 2018 and volunteers for hosting the workshops and for chairing them as rapporteur.

Last but not least, The CN meeting will collect the volunteers for the Chairmanship 2019 and the members of the Secretariat, considering that AGCOM (as outgoing Chair) and NTRA as Chair 2018 are part of it.

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The workshop will cover network sharing including co-invest models, shared access of passive infrastructure and active infrastructure (including LLU) as well as open access networks. These topics are utmost relevant due to the need to foster CAPEX intense roll-out required for next generation fixed and mobile networks and the opportunity to increase efficiency by sharing. With the upcoming decision on the Single Market Directive, sharing as a method to create incentives to invest is a major cornerstone.

The telecommunications sector experiences significant growth in traffic. The increasing traffic is driven by inter alia the consumption of non-linear audiovisual content, new applications and a digitization of the life of the Citizens of the EMERG countries. Also, increasing requirements from different sectors of the economy implies a need to upgrade telecommunications networks. Especially the digitization of the economy including e.g. logistics 4.0, production 4.0 and working life 4.0 implies new and more specific requirements on telecommunications networks, which cannot be fulfilled by legacy copper based networks.

To meet the requirements of the citizens and the economy, the operators must deploy new fiber based networks and 5G networks, which is CAPEX intense. Therefore, to create the necessary incentives for operators to invest and upgrade their networks, the regulatory framework must enable a cost efficient network roll-out. Further, the regulation must also allow the operators to generate sufficient profit margins for the long term and partly risky investments.

In the proposed regulatory framework for communications, (Single Market Directive), the EU Commission has proposed to foster investments in new technologies through different sharing methods, including:

  • Regulated access to passive infrastructure as a symmetric obligation imposed on all relevant holders of infrastructure.
  • A new regulatory set of rules for operators jointly rolling-out new access networks (co-invest-models), sharing the infrastructure on an open access basis
  • The continuation of obligations on SMP operators to provide local loop unbundling to facilitate the market entry of alternative operators by enabling these the shared access to the last mile infrastructure.The aim of the workshop is to identify the required initiatives by the national regulators needed to adapt the regulatory frameworks to facilitate and enable operators to share infrastructure in order to foster more innovation in networks, which is required for the digitization of the EMERG countries. By the common definition of relevant initiatives, the approximation of the regulation in the EMERG countries is carried forward.
  • The workshop is organized in sessions covering the following sessions:
  • Further, in order to enable the economically successful deployment of 5G mobile networks, the sharing of mobile access infrastructure will also be crucial to the digitization of the EMERG countries.
  • Open access models / wholesale only models and the requirements on a future proof regulatory framework;
  • Future regulation of local loop unbundling, which is suitable for next generation fiber networks (NGN) and the digitization of the economy;
  • Regulation of co-invest models to foster investments in NGN;
  • Sharing of mobile access networks to enable a cost efficient deployment of 5G Networks.

For the upcoming expert workshop EMERG would like to get an impression of the current regulatory situation in terms of network sharing. Eeach member NRA is requested to answer the following questionnaire.

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EMERG just published its annual Benchmark Report on the telecommunications market and regulation in the EMERG countries, comparing the regulatory environment and the market outcomes of the sector in 19 countries of the region: Austria, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Malta, Morocco, Palestine, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia and Turkey. The Report is based on questionnaires distributed to all members and answered by 16 countries.

The Benchmark Report collects information about some key performance indicators and trends on f the telecom sector, in particular for the fixed, mobile and broadband markets. Moreover, it also analyses the extent to which countries in the MENA region (Middle Eastern and North African countries), followed the model of regulation developed within the European Union.

A summarizes presentation of the report can be found here. The full report is can be found in the “Members” section.


ThOn 18th and 19th October EMERG will hold a workshop on OTT regulation, Cross Boarder content portability, Big Data regulation and Key market indicators in Rome, Italy.e workshop will cover different topics, which are of extreme relevance in the electronic communications sector, nowadays.

Regarding the OTT services, the BEREC, (Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications) , in its report published in 2016, acknowledged that availability of OTT services is also driving a change as for the competitive dynamics and technology scenarios in communication markets.
The BEREC report focuses on the relation between OTT services and electronic communication services aiming at defining the main differences and similarities between the traditional provider of electronic communication services and the new subjects, the OTT.
In 2016, the European Commission proposed the revision of the current regulatory framework, (European Electronic Communications Code), introducing the OTT players in the scope of the Directive, as new market players. In particular, the Code, which is currently under scrutiny, proposes that OTT who provide equivalent communications services to those provided by traditional telecoms operators are covered by similar rules, in the interest of end-user protection. However, the Commission has been careful that such regulation is not extended unduly, but all different emerging models for over-the-top services will be progressively introduced in the scope of the current regulatory framework, in order to ensure a level playing field.
Furthermore, the workshop will provide with some ideas regarding the evaluation of the impact of the OTT services in the electronic communication market in terms of market power and Telco operators’ strategies.
The second session of the workshop will deal with the cross-board content portability, as the right of the consumers to enjoy of contents legally purchased in its country of residence also when abroad. The EU approved recently a Regulation on this regard: Regulation (EU) 2017/1128 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 June 2017 on cross-border portability of online content services in the internal market.
As it is for the application of the Roaming-Like-At Home Regulation, also the portability of contents presents some criticisms because on one hand it grants the consumers with the right of have access to the contents purchased in its own country also abroad, but on the other hand there is the need to prevent the circumvention of the Regulation itself leading to a distortion of the market competition.
In the third session of the workshop, Big data will be the focus of the presentations and of the discussion among the EMERG Members. Building a data economy is part of the European Digital Single Market strategy. The EU initiative aims at fostering the best possible use of the potential of digital data to benefit the economy and society.
Generally, the free flow of non-personal data has been considered a leverage for boosting a competitive data economy in the Digital ecosystem: the aim is to allow companies and public administrations to store and process non-personal data wherever they choose.

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On 26 and 27 September EMERG will hold a workshop on Consumer Protection, QoS and Net Neutrality in Amman, Jordan.


In continuity with the discussion held at the EMERG workshop in Paris on 14-15 April 2011, the EMERG Plenary decided to include a workshop on the Consumer protection and the quality of service in the EMERG Work Plan 2017. The intention is to deal with some of the topics already taken into consideration in 2011, but considering them from additional perspectives, different angles. Besides, the workshop will open the discussion on the most relevant objectives listed in the Digital Single Market Strategy of the European Union about consumer protection and quality of service. For instance, the removal of the Geo-blocking and other geographically-based restrictions to boost the e-commerce in a wider market, though online cross-border sales. In addition, the workshop will address with a comprehensive approach the general subject of the “Quality of Service”, adding also the concept of the “Quality of Experience”, which is now deemed as relevant from the Consumers’ perspective. Namely, how the electronic communications services are perceived by the users, considering the different factors which effect their perception. Basically, in the recent years, it has been registered a shift from a “technological approach” network-based typical of the measurement of the quality of service to a more subjective one centered on the users experience.

Furthermore, during the workshop the participants will discuss about some other topics of common interest, which are included in the questionnaire:

  • the latest updates on the transparency regulation policies in the different Countries;
  • consumers’ empowerment through educational campaign;
  • handicapped users’ special provisions.
  • Consumers’ complaints handling and dispute resolution.

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