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Regulatory Watch

The IIC's eye on the news. This bulletin is regularly updated with thumbnails of industry news. Follow the links for a round-up of latest industry stories.


Reaping digital dividends in Europe and Central Asia

A new World Bank regional report, ‘Reaping digital dividends’  argues that digital dividends have the potential to be the driving force of poverty reduction and shared prosperity in the Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

BEREC head warns that Europe’s framework lacks ‘agility and certainty’

Sébastien Soriano, head of French regulator, Arcep, and current of the European regulators body, BEREC, took time at the recent Mobile World Congress to express BEREC’s views on the ongoing review of the regulatory framework and to share BEREC’s commitment to facilitate the implementation of European digital policy,...

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Europe signs off on UHF band for mobile

The European Parliament has approved plans for coordination of the 700 MHz band for wireless broadband services across the EU by 2020, notes Mobile World Live. The vote covers the use of the UHF (470MHz to 790MHz) band across the economic bloc...

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

India consults on mergers; disagrees on industry ‘health’

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India is seeking views from stakeholders on identifying obstacles in the current regulations hindering mergers and acquisitions in the telecoms sector, along with those complicating allotment, sharing and trading of airwaves, reports the Economic Times.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

UK report on connected and autonomous vehicles

The UK science and technology committee in the Lords has issued a report on connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV). It says the government is too focused on highly-automated private road vehicles (“driverless cars”),...

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Germany aims to boost gigabit internet

Germany’s federal government plans to help invest 100 billion euro over eight years to roll-out gigabit internet across Germany, reports Deutsche Welle.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Nigerian regulator hires consultant for interconnect review

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has hired consultants PwC to carry out an impact assessment on the interconnect regime, reports Biztech Africa. The NCC’s chair, Umar Danbatta, speaking at a stakeholder forum, said the review had become necessary in view of the changes in the sector.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Austria to decide on broadband expansion framework

Austria’s Telecom Control Commission (TKK) has published a draft decision on developing the regulatory framework for broadband expansion across the country, notes TeleGeography. “The regulator’s proposed decision has a particular focus on the framework for vectoring technology,...

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Germany acts on transmitter in children’s doll

Germany’s regulator, Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA), has taken action against unauthorised wireless transmitting equipment in a children’s doll called Cayla, and has already removed products from the market. “Items that conceal cameras or microphones and that are capable of transmitting a signal, and therefore can transmit data without detection, compromise people's privacy.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

European media report studies pluralism

The European Audiovisual Observatory, part of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, has published a study, “Media ownership, market realities and regulatory responses”, which asks how European and national legislation can protect media pluralism, whether this be in the form of a multitude of operators making available a large variety choice of programming, or...

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Germany plans social media law

Germany is planning a new law calling for social networks like Facebook to remove slanderous or threatening online postings quickly or face fines, reports Reuters. “This (draft law) sets out binding standards for the way operators of social networks deal with complaints...

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

FCC is studying media ownership rules

FCC chairman Ajit Pai has said that the agency is studying restrictions on media ownership, characterising a number of the rules as “quite antiquated”. In an interview with Variety, Pai said that an easing of such restrictions “is one of the issues that is under consideration”.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Mobile concerns and more in the Czech Republic

Czech political parties have agreed to fast-track a new telecoms bill before elections in October that could reduce mobile phone bills for consumers, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka has said, as reported by Reuters.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

South Africa’s ISP concerns; proposal on IT white paper

The Internet Service Providers’ Association (Ispa), a body that represents many of South Africa’s ISPs, has accused communications regulator Icasa of ignoring a policy directive from telecommunications and postal services minister Siyabonga Cwele over competition in broadband, reports TechCentral.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Deal to devolve UK’s Openreach now in place

The biggest reform of the UK’s wholesale network, Openreach, is set to conclude after parent company BT agreed to regulator Ofcom’s requirements for the legal separation of its network division.

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

Slovakia cuts fees to boost investment in ‘white spots’

Slovak regulator, RU, is decreasing by 75% the fee for using radio frequencies in municipalities designated as white spots within its broadband programme, notes Telecompaper. “An operator which decides to cover such a municipality will save on costs associated with operation of a transmitter.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

New net neutrality law in the US ‘in three months’

The US Congress could be discussing net neutrality legislation within three months, replacing controversial FCC-created regulations, according to an academic with the ear of the administration, reports the Register.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

UK government sets out transformation strategy

The UK Cabinet Office has published the Government Transformation Strategy, setting out how the government will harness digital technologies, skills and tools to transform public services and put the citizen first – and redefine the relationship between the citizen and the state.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

South Africa makes progress in wholesale network discussions

South Africa’s Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services believes it has won widespread support from ICT sector for its wholesale open-access network proposal for radio spectrum and that the emphasis has shifted to how the policy will be implemented, reports Business Day.

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Ex-FCC head speaks on regulatory affairs

In an interview in Marketplace, the recent FCC chair, Tom Wheeler, was asked about regulations he created. Says Wheeler: “Well, I think it's really important that we have protected a fast, fair, and open internet. And the question now becomes: how will the new administration respond to that? Will they say, ‘OK,..."

  • Wednesday, 22 February 2017

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