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News :: Press pack: Important challenges for regulators remain, says EU-report

Telecoms: Regulatory supervision delivers results, but a truly single market is still far away

(12/07/2007) Although the EU's Telecom Rules have led to significant benefits for citizens and enterprises alike, important challenges remain for national and European regulators, says a report published by the Commission today. The report presents the results of 600 draft regulatory decisions sent to the Commission by National Regulatory Authorities. The Commission's review mechanism of national regulatory decisions, an important part of the EU Telecom Rules, has led to more coherent market analyses, greater transparency and has ensured that regulation only exists in markets which need it to be competitive. However, the Commission's report also found that, in a number of cases, the solutions which national regulators impose in order to remedy a lack of competition vary considerably, leading to the danger of a fragmentation of the internal telecoms market to the detriment of consumers and operators with pan-European business activities.

"We must now promote the development of pan-European operators" Commissioner Reding

“Close Cooperation between the European Commission and national regulators is crucial for building a truly dynamic and fully functioning single telecoms market,” said EU Telecoms Commissioner Viviane Reding. “By overseeing the day-to-day implementation of the EU Telecom Rules, the Commission has been able to create more legal certainty for companies wishing to invest EU-wide. Although this has improved competition throughout the EU and benefited consumers by lower prices and more choice, we must now remove the remaining inconsistencies to level the playing field in Europe and to promote the development of pan-European operators.”

"The current EU Telecom Rules are based on competition law principles and regulatory obligations can only be imposed by the national regulators following a market analysis on undertakings with significant market power. This approach has opened up telecoms markets to competition, lead to more choice for consumers and allowed them to benefit from decreasing prices in many areas," added Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes.

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