Radio spectrum management processes vary considerably between the EU's Member States. However, all must comply with European agreements on frequency use.

This supports a single market for wireless services and equipment, and reduces the risk of harmful interference between spectrum users.

While the detailed mechanisms for radio spectrum management vary from country to country, Member States coordinate the use of this essential resource by implementing Commission Decisions at national level. These Decisions are important tools, paving the way towards truly harmonised spectrum allocation throughout the EU.

National authorities report back to the Commission regularly on harmonisation issues, and on progress with national implementation.

Harmonisation and information

The European Commission does not itself directly manage any radio spectrum. However, it has a major input into spectrum management across Europe, by developing an EU-wide spectrum policy and through coordinating harmonisation and implementation.

This is achieved in large part through technical implementation measures that are discussed and developed by the Radio Spectrum Committee (RSC).This body was set up under the Radio Spectrum Decision; it works under the EU’s "comitology procedure".

On a technical level, the RSC works very closely with the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) and its decisions are scrutinised by the European Parliament.