Digital Single Market
Digital Economy & Society

Commissioner OETTINGER welcomes 5G Manifesto

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Günther H. Oettinger welcomed the 5G Manifesto presented by key players in the telecoms industry and sectors which will use 5G technologies and services in the future. The manifesto is a valuable input for the 5G Action Plan that will be presented in September, together with the proposal for the review of the telecom regulatory framework.

Today, Commissioner Oettinger received the “5G Manifesto for timely deployment of 5G in Europe” from key players in telecoms and in sectors in which 5G technologies will help build innovative products and services. The manifesto presents a consolidated industry view developed by board-level executives from the telecoms sector (BT Group, Deutsche TelekomEricsson, Hutchison Whampoa Europe, Inmarsat, Nokia, Orange, Proximus, Royal KPN, SES, Tele2 AB, TIM - Telecom Italia, Telefonica, Telekom Austria Group, Telenor Group, Telia Company and Vodafone) and leading companies from the industries that are most likely to take advantage of 5G technologies early on, starting in 2018 (transport and logistics, healthcare, energy, media and entertainment, manufacturing, smart cities). Early supporters include Ahlers, Airbus Defence & Space, Royal Philips, Siemens and Thales Alenia Space. It is expected that more industry players will subscribe to it once published. A high level meeting between representatives of the manifesto promoters and Commissioner Oettinger took place today to discuss 5G core priorities and recommendations for the next steps.

The 5G Manifesto outlines the main opportunities and challenges linked to the deployment of 5G infrastructure in Europe. In particular, it provides recommendations for a common vision and a calendar for deployment of investments, standards and the synchronised introduction of services in Europe. It underlines the need for spectrum and improved regulatory conditions in terms of local installation of cells, open internet rules which promote innovation, data protection and fair use.

When drawing up its 5G Action Plan, the Commission will consider the industry analysis and recommendations, alongside other inputs, and in particular from the consultation, which is open until 11th July. The 5G Action Plan will be presented in September, at the same time as the proposal for the review of the telecom regulatory framework.

The 5G Manifesto at a glance

The telecom companies propose a challenging calendar for the introduction of 5G networks across Europe. They commit to starting large-scale demonstrations by 2018 and launching 5G commercially in at least one city in each of the 28 Member States by 2020. This responds to Commissioner Oettinger's call of 23rd February at the Mobile World Congress 2016 to raise our ambitions to make Europe a leader in 5G deployment. The manifesto also underlines the importance of sectors such as automotive or media in the development and deployment of the 5G networks and the need to work together to create the 5G business models, services and products.

Some highlights of the manifesto include:

5G as key enabler for the digitalisation of the European economy

  • The Commission and Member States should promote the benefits of 5G networks to meet connectivity needs of vertical industries and public institutions

Ecosystem-forming initiatives by industry players and the role of EU

  • The industry is committed to pan-European 5G trials in areas such as connective automotive; connected eHealth, transport and logistics, Public Safety, smart grids, smart cities, media and entertainment. In 2017, it will deliver a roadmap for trials and demonstrators to start in 2018.
  • Industry calls on the Commission to use existing instruments such as EFSI and structural funds to create a €1 billion 5G venture fund to take equity stakes in European innovative startups aiming at developing 5G technologies and applications across verticals.

A 5G action plan unfolding in a Digital Single Market

  • The manifesto calls for timely identification and granting of spectrum for 5G including 700 MHz, 3.4-3.8GHz and higher frequency bands ( for 24 GHz and beyond) at the latest by 2020.

Investments at the centre of 5G Policy Framework

  • The manifesto calls on the Commission to adapt the regulatory environment, increasing emphasis on investment including R&D and for Member States to adapt local regulations to facilitate the construction of denser networks

See the manifesto for full list of recommendations.

Next steps for the 5G Action Plan

During the Mobile World Congress in February, Commissioner Oettinger announced his intention to come up with an ambitious 5G Action Plan, presenting the agenda, measures and investments needed to rollout essential 5G infrastructure in the EU. He also called on "vertical sectors" like automotive, health, smart factories and logistics, energy, media and entertainment to work together with the Commission in building the future market of 5G products and services. 

The 5G Action Plan will be developed and issued by the Commission as a Communication, in a package together with the European Commission's review of the telecom regulatory framework, to be published in autumn.

The main objectives of the 5G Action Plan will be to:

  • Make Europe a leader in deploying world class connectivity infrastructure, addressing key societal challenges (automotive, health, digital factories) whilst providing competitiveness opportunities for the EU ICT sectors, and competitiveness gains for the whole economy including all the vertical sectors that will modernise their production processes and services.
  • Consolidate the position of EU industry as lead supply industry for advanced ICT products and services
  • Leverage the results of the 5G Public Private Partnership and complement it by addressing barriers to market roll-out which are beyond research in technology and come from business models, investment and regulation.

5G and the Digital Single Market

5G is an essential technology for the Digital Single Market, fully enabling the digitisation of the industry, as it allows introducing tailor-made connectivity models in the novel digital business models of important vertical sectors such as automotive, health, smart factory or energy. It will accelerate the digital transformation of a range of sectors, in line with key Digital Single Market objectives.

Having the potential to create new digital ecosystems where networks act as platforms for new, specialised services, 5G represents a major opportunity to improve the European industry competitiveness, by providing better services to citizens, cutting down operation costs, and introducing novel sets of services to industries.

Pictures and videos from the roundtable are available on the European Commission's Audiovisual Services website.

@DSMeu