EP stands for competition in telecommunications
Brussels, 10 March 2015: Following the declarations by Commission Vestager during her hearing in front of the ECON Committee, showing her willingness to establish a close and fruitful relationship at all levels with the Parliament, the European Parliament voted today on the Annual Report on EU Competition Policy.
With the aim of putting European competitiveness high on the political agenda, the European Parliament warned that "in the next-generation broadband sector, the former monopolies have a staggering market share of over 80 %, recalling that effective competition is the best driver of efficient investment.”
In its resolution, the European Parliament supported amendments tabled by MEP Tibor Szanyi (S&D-HU) and called on the European Commission to "enforce properly both ex post and ex ante competition rules in order to prevent excessive market concentration and abuse of dominance, underlining that competitive pressure is key to ensuring that consumers can benefit the most from high-quality services at affordable prices”.
Echoing Commissioner Vestager’s interview from 8 March in the Financial Times on the strong link between competition and investments, the European Parliament insisted on the fact that "limiting competition is unlikely to lead to more broadband investment, even in remote areas, as full coverage of basic broadband services has been achieved in Europe through a regulatory framework ensuring access to dominant operators’ networks.”
The European Parliament also believes that "in order to maximise investments, telecoms policies should enable all players to make efficient investments by providing them with effective access to non-duplicable network assets and fit-for-purpose wholesale access products”.
Finally the European Parliament expressed some doubts about the correctness of data presented on the EU’s under-performance in high-speed broadband including speeds received by end-users, infrastructure investments and the financial state of the sector in a global comparison. It therefore expressly called on the European Commission to base its decisions and policy proposals on a thorough and impartial analysis of correct, relevant and independent datasets.
ECTA welcomes and supports this strong statement by the European Parliament on the major role played by competition to achieve affordable prices and choice for end-users, as well as the recognition of its key role in driving investments in infrastructures. ECTA and its members do stand since 1998 for competition, investment and innovation in telecoms.
ECTA (the European Competitive Telecommunications Association - www.ectaportal.com) is the pan-European pro-competitive trade association that represents more than 100 of the leading challenger telecoms operators across Europe. For over a decade, ECTA has been supporting the regulatory and commercial interests of telecoms operators, ISPs & equipment manufacturers in pursuit of a fair regulatory environment that allows all electronic communications providers to compete on level terms. Our members have been the leading innovators in Internet services, broadband, business communications, entertainment and mobile.
Aurélie Bladocha, Public Affairs Manager (+32 2 478 78 61 00/ firstname.lastname@example.org