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Parliamentary questions
5 September 2012
E-007464/2012
Answer given by Ms Kroes on behalf of the Commission

The Commission underlines its commitment to an open and high-quality Internet. Competition plays a key role in ensuring consumer choice, quality of service and affordable prices. Managed services can enhance the user experience and, as long as there is transparency and choice, they could be beneficial and enable innovation and new business models. However, the Commission considers that competition should ensure that such services will not displace the provision of best efforts Internet by ISPs(1), so that all citizens, irrespective of their income or residence, have access to broadband Internet in accordance with the DAE targets and the ability to access and distribute information or run applications and services of their choice. The Commission is preparing a recommendation on net neutrality issues which will enhance transparency and choice; the resulting increase in legal certainty should support the necessary investments in high speed Internet. Moreover, national regulators set minimum quality of service requirements if they consider that operators are engaging in service degradation and hindering or slowing down traffic over networks.

The Commission's objective at the WCIT(2) will be to ensure that any changes to the ITR(3) will be compatible with the EU acquis. As the EU regulatory framework aims at fostering competition and innovation, including in Internet markets, the Commission will carefully evaluate the effect of any proposal in this respect. The Commission also questions the appropriateness of ITRs for setting compensation and tariff systems. The Commission's proposal for a Council decision on the EU Position for the review of the ITR at the WCIT or its preparatory instances has been adopted on 2 August and transmitted to the Council.

(1)Internet Service Provider.
(2)World Conference on International Telecommunications.
(3)International Telecommunications Regulations.

OJ C 228 E, 07/08/2013
Last updated: 11 September 2012Legal notice