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IP/07/888

Brussels, 27 June 2007

EU Telecom rules: 15 infringement cases proceed, six are closed and one is suspended

In a new round of proceedings for infringements of EU telecom rules, the European Commission has decided to refer 4 cases to the European Court of Justice concerning Germany, Poland and Portugal. The Commission has also opened 2 new cases against Poland and Spain. Meanwhile, in follow-up cases, the Commission is sending 8 reasoned opinions (the second stage of an infringement proceeding) and is closing 6 cases.

“With today’s action, we confirm that the correct application of the EU telecoms rules in all Member States continues to be a priority,” said EU Telecoms Commissioner Viviane Reding. “Consistent regulatory conditions are essential for Europe's telecom industry and for effective competition in our internal market. We must continue to work hard with all EU Member States to achieve this goal. I am however, pleased to note that number portability is finally available in 25 EU countries.”

The two new cases in which a letter of formal notice has been sent concern the lack of market analysis to support existing price regulation for retail broadband services in Poland and the designation of a universal service provider and the universal service financing mechanism in Spain. A supplementary letter of formal notice will be sent to Belgium since recent legislation on the must-carry regime was adopted but does not fully conform to the requirements of the Universal Service Directive (see IP/06/488).

The Commission has also sent reasoned opinions to Latvia (notification mechanism), Poland (independence of the National Regulatory Authority), Sweden (rights of appeal), Belgium (special tariffs), Germany (must-carry regime), Cyprus (rights of way), the United Kingdom (lack of comprehensive directory services) and Poland (caller location information for 112).

Meanwhile, the Commission has decided to refer four cases to the European Court of Justice. These concern Germany (regulatory holiday and double dominance, see IP/07/889), Poland (definition of subscribers according to the Framework Directive) and Portugal (lack of comprehensive directory services).

In this round, the Commission could also close six cases. Two concern caller location information for 112, which is now provided (on request) in Belgium and Hungary. Following new legislation in Italy and Slovakia concerning the Access Directive and the ePrivacy Directive respectively, the pending cases could also be closed. The Commission is also closing a further two cases against Slovakia and Estonia for incorrect application. In Slovakia, fixed number portability is now fully available while following market analysis in Estonia, a reference unbundling offer has finally been imposed.

Meanwhile, the Commission is suspending the application to the Court regarding Estonia’s failure to carry out market reviews following further recent notifications.

A detailed overview of the state of infringement proceedings is available on the DG Information Society and Media’s implementation and enforcement website (http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/policy/ecomm/implementation_enforcement/index_en.htm)

See also MEMO/07/255


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