2017 Telecom Package

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The Telecom Package (link to procedure file) is a group of EU texts to reform EU telecom regulation. A new package was adopted in 2008, find back the archives on the or in the main page on this subject.

The European Commission proposed 5 texts within this new Telecom Package, among which 3 legislative text and 2 communications:

  • Draft Directive on an European Electronic Communication Code
  • Draft Regulation on the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications (BEREC)
  • Draft Regulation on the promotion of Internet connectivity in local communities and public spaces (WiFi4EU)
  • Communication on 5G Action Plan and Staff Working Document
  • Communication and Staff Working Document on Gigabit Connectivity

LQDN is essentially working on the European Electronic Communications code.


January 2017

  • 26: Public hearing on the review of the framework for electronic communications in the Industry committee of the European Parliament (ITRE)

February 2017

  • Presentation of telecoms proposals in ITRE for the European Electronic Communications code.

March 2017

  • 22-23: consideration of the draft report of the European Electronic Communications code in ITRE
  • 28: Deadline for tabling amendments for the European Electronic Communications code in ITRE

April 2017

  • 24-25: consideration of amendments for the European Electronic Communications code in ITRE

May 2017

June 2017

  • 22: vote in ITRE for the European Electronic Communications code

July 2017

  • 11: vote in commission of Industry, Research and Energy of the European Parliament of the European Electronic Communication code (ITRE)


Operating forces

Private sector =

Telcos Lobbies


  • Answer to the public consultation (web site et pdf) from December 2015
  • Press release (web site) from September 2016


  • Position paper (pdf) from 25 January 2017
  • Summary: ETNO is a lobby representing incumbent operators (British Telecom, Orange, Proximus...). Their position tends, of course, towards reinforcing their position in the European Telecom market, limiting the risks of regulation "harming" innovation, increasing connectivity, reinforcing infrastructure competition, avoiding regulation model where they'd be trapped (especially those linked to the topography of certain areas...).


  • Increase investment opportunities (especially for 5G and Next Generation Access (NGA)), which will open the prospect of new markets
  • Infrastructure-based competition [1] rather than service-based competition. A comfortable position for incumbent players who already have the majority of infrastructures. In addition, ETNO regrets that the text is not vague enough with the technology (technology-neutral), betting on a future technology evolution (future-oriented).
  • Deployment of optic fibre
  • Interesting position on "distortion of competition" in heterogeneous markets in certain regions and localities. Under the cover of arguments to ensure competition, ETNO sees the presence of well-established local players with access to very high-speed broadband as a thread to their business model.
  • Role of cable operators - to develop
  • Convergence: regular point in the position of ETNO where the postulate is that in the future all the services will be based on IP and therefore ETNO pushes towards a homogenisation of the regulations on these services. Only, it is not desirable and it would close the market access to actors not having, for example, fibre.
  • New actors: new actors, service providers, arrived on the market changing the rules. These are called OTTs (over the top players). The texts of the telecom package refer more to a differentiation numbering based services and non-numbering based services.


  • ETNO recalls that there will be a lot of data shared in the future, nothing new
  • Allocation of frequencies: ETNO welcomes the current measures that have harmonized the technical use of frequencies, in particular for electronic communications networks. But regrets that the fragmentation of regulations makes the granting of frequencies and licenses too complicated.
  • More coordination for granting frequency ranges
  • A policy of granting simpler frequency ranges, particularly in the resale of the spectrum and minimizing conditions that distorted competition. In other words, more freedoms for the dominant actors who can sell and resell ranges and to ignore measures to protect competition when small players find themselves faced with larger players.

Universal Service Obligations[2]:

  • Having regards for the USO, ETNO tries to come back on the mere principle of this concept: the funding by private operators of a public service. The scope would be too wide, the regular reviews too numerous and too expensive. ETNO proposes even than a public service should be funded by public money[3]. In other words, if it doesn't have a profit, it isn't interesting.

End-users rights:

Position on rapporteur's report: website


  • Position paper (pdf) from 8 December 2016

Summary: ECTA gathers "alternative" operators and service providers (Bouyguers, Illiad, Netflix...). Their main objective is the access to the market owned by the incumbent operators that are mainly represented by ETNO (British Telecom, Deutsch Telecom, Proximus, Orange...). Their approaches are motivated by the openness of the market and the competition, the development of the internal market. In their position paper, they underline the importance for all actors to be able to invest in the market (through critics of the current co-investment model) and emphasize the too big risk of too much deregulation (that would be unfavourable for them as it will reinforce the incumbent operators).

Their positions in several points:

  • Physical access [4] ECTA reminds that although the supply of "active" access has been decisive for many actors, it can not substitute for "passive" access and asks for the code to be clearer on this subject.
  • Review of the concept of competition' ': in the current version of the code, two players are sufficient to establish satisfactory competition. ECTA does not, of course, agree with this proposal.
  • Significant Market Power : ECTA demands an equal approach when making regulatory decisions in order not to support incumbent or monopolistic actors against alternative actors.
  • Deregulation and co-investment agreement: ECTA reminds that the risk of deregulation of the fibre market (and particularly FTTH) coupled with the dominant position of the incumbents in this market would lead to the exclusion of "smaller players in the market, particularly in the context of a co-investment agreement".
  • Retail market: The retail market must be regulated a priori as well as the wholesale market in order to avoid the abuse of a dominant position and not to wait for regulation Posteriori.
  • Spectrum: The spectrum must be available to all and not only be distributed to major players.
  • 'Simplification of the universal service of electronic communications' : The provisions present in the code are supported by ECTA.
  • Transnational market: ECTA emphasizes the lack of initiative in competitive positions in commercial offers (B2B) and the present provisions would retain the concentration of markets.

Position on rapporteur's report: website



Position on the rapporteur's report : PDF

Public Sector

European Parliament

Procedure page on the European Code of Electronic Communications: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/ficheprocedure.do?lang=&reference=2016/0288%28COD%29

ITRE (lead)

Shadow rapporteurs :

  • GUE-NGL Group:

IMCO (opinion)

CULT (opinion)

LIBE (opinion)

JURI (on the recast technique)

Council of the European Union

European Commission

Compromise of the Maltese presidency of 31 March 2017: pdf

European Commission


FDN Federation

  • Position paper (web site) from 14 November 2016
  • Summary:

FFDN is a federation of associative Internet Service Providers (ISP). The Federation's analysis of the Telecom Package (TP) is two-fold: the deployment of local loop access via optical fibre and the defragmentation of radio frequencies used for mobile. Both modernisations are important and recognise as necessary to the development of future access services.

Concerning the deployment of a local loop access via optical fibre, FFDN proposes the deployment of a loop through locality that would be the property of a public power who would offer it for rental. Limiting the situation where different operator have the property of different loop at the same place (like in Paris for instance) and allow service providers that are not owners of the local loop access to offer services on this loop. The consequences would be, according to FFDN, favourable for the openness of the fibre market, favourable for the access of smaller service providers to the fibre especially through breaking the oligarchic system of the current fibre market and allow a better regulation of the local loop access.

Defragmentation of frequencies would allow the opening of the frequencies to the largest number of actors. FFDN proposes the distribution of those frequencies through a large European public service that would rent the frequencies in fair and transparent way.

Essentially, as much for fibre than frequencies, FFDN proposes a separation between the ownership of the infrastructure and the providing of services on the infrastructure in order to allow the most fair and open access to all type of actors.

Summary of the proposals:

  • each local fibre loop, area by area, must be controlled by the public power;
  • the local radio loop must be deployed at the European level, by bundling frequencies, for a better technical efficiency;
  • the entity in charge of the deployment and the maintenance of a local loop must be forbidden to operate it and must obey public and transparent rules for the marketing towards all European operators that are interested;
  • those local loops must allow to broadcast network access in all Europe, for all citizens.

FFDN underlines that the TP falls short of those objectives but opens in its position paper the proposal for an asymmetric regulation based not on the size of the actors of the market. Based on the observation that there exists two type of actors: owners of local loop and those big enough to create their own market, FFDN proposes a cohabitation between the different actors through a mutualisation of the infrastructure and the possibility for any EU actor, based wherever, to provide services on a local loop.

Net Commons

After many discussions with many European Community Networks (CNs), researchers from netCommons are happy to present a draft open letter on "policy recommendations for sustaining Community Networks". The letter is targeted at European policy-makers, who recently started working on an overhaul of the telecom regulatory framework.

This letter, drafted in collaboration with several European CNs and advocacy groups, is meant to offer a collective voice to this growing movement. Until March 15th, we would like to collect signatures from as many European CNs as possible, as well as other supporting organizations (be they advocacy groups, research projects, non-profits, SMEs, local authorities, etc.).

After this consultation period and the collection of signatures, we would like to send the letter to members of EU Parliament, national delegations at the Council of the EU, as well as to key officials from the EU Commission.

Several outcomes can be expected, including:

  • The publication of a joint press release by all signatories to disseminate the open letter as widely as possible (by the end of March).
  • Proposals for amendments reflecting the recommendations of this open letter, to be sent to key members of the EU Parliament before the first crucial vote on the Telecoms Package in late April.
  • A policy workshop to be organized later this year in Brussels.

Of course, all of these potential outcomes will depend upon the involvement of signatory organizations, and in particular of the willingness of CNs to work together.

But first, we are sharing the draft to a wider circle of CNs and other people interested in their activities for consultation and potential amendments to the text. Until March 15th, you can read and comment on the draft letter, offer corrections and suggest changes or additions by using co-ment, an online tool for collaborative writing. You can access the letter at the bottom of this page.

If and when you agree to sign the letter, please send the name of your organization, the country where it is based and its high-resolution logo to:advocacy@netcommons.eu

Read the letter

General position of La Quadrature du Net


Draft Directive on an European Electronic Communication Code

  • Text on the website of the European Commission
  • Analysis

Draft Regulation on the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications (BEREC)

  • Text on the website of the European Commission
  • Analysis

Draft Regulation on the promotion of Internet connectivity in local communities and public spaces (WiFi4EU)

  • Text on the website of the European Commission
  • Analysis

Communication on 5G Action Plan and Staff Working Document

  • Text on the website of the European Commission
  • Analysis

Communication and Staff Working Document on Gigabit Connectivity

  • Text on the website of the European Commission
  • Analysis

Other readings


  • Public consultation on the analysis of the High and Very High Speed markets: accelerate the investment in optic fibre and encourage the digitalisation of French companies (http://www.arcep.fr/index.php?id=8571&no_cache=1&tx_gsactualite_pi1[uid]=2035&tx_gsactualite_pi1[annee]=&tx_gsactualite_pi1[theme]=&tx_gsactualite_pi1[motscle]=&tx_gsactualite_pi1[backID]=26&cHash=b69abcb19bcec53012e7cca999975713 ). Summary by NextINPact.


  1. This is an important point that is related service-based competition, seen later in the position
  2. What it is: http://www.arcep.fr/index.php?id=8102
  3. The more obnoxious, the better
  4. Operators who have the infrastructure sell two types of access to other operators or service providers: 'passive' access where a line is provided but the operator or the service provider must install hardware on the last section and an "active" access where the bandwidth is leased and there is no need to install hardware.