Digital Agenda for Europe
A Europe 2020 Initiative

Actions 113 and 114: Regulatory measures to promote competition and enhance the broadband investment environment

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Action 113 has been coupled with Action 114 (Recommendation on cost methodologies for regulated wholesale prices for network access) in one single recommendation on consistent non-discrimination obligations and costing methodologies to promote competition and enhance the broadband investment environment that was adopted by the Commission in September 2013, in the "Connected Continent" proposal.

What is the problem? Investments in next generation networks needed to reach DAE targets.

Network operators have been reluctant to invest large sums in new fast networks. These investments are however necessary for Europe to remain competitive on the global scale.

A consistent and stable regulatory approach is needed in order to foster the investments required to deliver the DAE broadband targets on speed, penetration and coverage. The Commission has witnessed significant variations, not always justified by national circumstances, in the approach National Regulatory Authorities have chosen in access price setting and to non-discrimination obligations.

Why is EU action required? Inconsistent regulatory approaches hamper the internal market.

Regulatory inconsistencies across the EU have a negative impact on the internal market as such differences jeopardise investments and hamper both market integration and the development of pan-European operators. Stable and predictable regulation, applied in a consistent manner throughout the EU is needed in order to create the right incentives for investment in high speed internet and to achieve a competitive single market for telecommunications.

What has the Commission done so far?

  • On 12 July 2012, VP Kroes announced a new policy package to create the legal predictability that investors are asking for against the current overall economic situation in Europe and the substantial roll-out costs of high speed internet.
  • On the principles of the 12 July statement, the Commission announced it was preparing a Recommendation on consistent non-discrimination obligations and costing methodologies to promote competition and enhance the broadband investment environment.
  • On 11 September 2013 the Commission adopted one single Recommendation on consistent non-discrimination obligations and costing methodologies to promote competition and enhance the broadband investment environment as part of the "Connected Continent" proposal.

What will the Commission do next?

In due course the Commission will monitor the implementation of the Recommendation in the different Member States through the Article 7 notification procedure where national regulators submit their draft measures to the Commission for scrutiny.