Parliamentary questions
21 July 2016
O-000109/2016
Question for oral answer
to the Commission
Rule 128
Viviane Reding, Jan Philipp Albrecht, Lucy Anderson, Eric Andrieu, Pascal Arimont, Petras Auštrevičius, Georges Bach, Zigmantas Balčytis, Burkhard Balz, Nikolay Barekov, Hugues Bayet, Ivo Belet, Brando Benifei, José Blanco López, Reimer Böge, Franc Bogovič, David Borrelli, Bogdan Brunon Wenta, Klaus Buchner, Cristian-Silviu Buşoi, Nicola Caputo, David Casa, Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Lorenzo Cesa, Dita Charanzová, Nessa Childers, Deirdre Clune, Birgit Collin-Langen, Lara Comi, Therese Comodini Cachia, Edward Czesak, Miriam Dalli, Viorica Dăncilă, Nicola Danti, Michel Dantin, Esther de Lange, Marielle de Sarnez, Tamás Deutsch, Angel Dzhambazki, Christian Ehler, Karl-Heinz Florenz, Jacqueline Foster, Michael Gahler, Francesc Gambús, Elisabetta Gardini, María Teresa Giménez Barbat, Charles Goerens, Nathalie Griesbeck, Françoise Grossetête, Antanas Guoga, András Gyürk, Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Krzysztof Hetman, Monika Hohlmeier, Filiz Hyusmenova, Liisa Jaakonsaari, Ivan Jakovčić, Marc Joulaud, Eva Kaili, Karol Karski, Sylvia-Yvonne Kaufmann, Seán Kelly, Timothy Kirkhope, Dieter-Lebrecht Koch, Dietmar Köster, Stelios Kouloglou, Agnieszka Kozłowska-Rajewicz, Barbara Kudrycka, Georgios Kyrtsos, Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Alain Lamassoure, Bernd Lange, Jo Leinen, Jeroen Lenaers, Janusz Lewandowski, Peter Liese, Olle Ludvigsson, Elżbieta Katarzyna Łukacijewska, Ivana Maletić, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Valentinas Mazuronis, David McAllister, Mairead McGuinness, Roberta Metsola, Louis Michel, Marlene Mizzi, Claude Moraes, Elisabeth Morin-Chartier, Javier Nart, Momchil Nekov, Angelika Niebler, Andrey Novakov, Jan Olbrycht, Rolandas Paksas, Demetris Papadakis, Eva Paunova, Alojz Peterle, Morten Helveg Petersen, Pina Picierno, Tonino Picula, Markus Pieper, Sirpa Pietikäinen, Georgi Pirinski, Julia Pitera, Marek Plura, Pavel Poc, Gabriele Preuß, Franck Proust, Carolina Punset, Julia Reda, Michel Reimon, Frédérique Ries, Dominique Riquet, Robert Rochefort, Claude Rolin, Dariusz Rosati, Virginie Rozière, Paul Rübig, Tokia Saïfi, Massimiliano Salini, Anne Sander, Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, Marietje Schaake, Christel Schaldemose, Helmut Scholz, Annie Schreijer-Pierik, Sven Schulze, Olga Sehnalová, Siôn Simon, Maria Spyraki, Ivan Štefanec, Catherine Stihler, Dubravka Šuica, Tibor Szanyi, Antonio Tajani, Marc Tarabella, Pavel Telička, Róża Gräfin von Thun und Hohenstein, Patrizia Toia, Helga Trüpel, István Ujhelyi, Inese Vaidere, Ivo Vajgl, Kathleen Van Brempt, Lambert van Nistelrooij, Sabine Verheyen, Axel Voss, Elissavet Vozemberg-Vrionidi, Jarosław Wałęsa, Renate Weber, Iuliu Winkler, Theodoros Zagorakis, Tomáš Zdechovský, Carlos Zorrinho, Milan Zver, Tadeusz Zwiefka

 Subject: Call for a limitation of abusive fees charged for cross-border intra-EU phone calls and SMSs in the upcoming review of the telecoms framework

As of 15 June 2017, retail roaming fees charged to consumers when they use their mobile phones within the European Union but outside their home country will finally be eliminated. As mobile phones revolutionise our lives, we believe that this is a great achievement for consumers. The European Union should continue to deliver tangible benefits to EU citizens.

However, the regulation adopted on 27 October 2015 only covers roaming tariffs, and its scope is restricted to phone calls and SMSs originating in a Member State other than the Member State of the mobile subscription. Hence, it does not regulate what are often referred to as intra-EU phone calls and SMSs, which originate in the country of the mobile subscription and terminate in another Member State. This leads to prohibitive prices for consumers (for example, often EUR 1/min for calls and EUR 0.5 for an SMS), and the unacceptable situation whereby calls made while abroad can be cheaper than calls made while at home. Borders do not fit into the digital world and such an outdated practice does not belong in the 21st century.

In its proposal for a Telecoms Single Market, published on 11 September 2013, the Commission proposed to change this situation and to limit the fees charged for phone calls and SMSs from the home country to another Member State. However, these provisions were dropped from the final compromise reached in trilogues. Therefore, as part of the wider push for the completion of a truly European Digital Single Market, one of the top priorities of both Parliament and the Commission, we would like to ask the following question:

Does the Commission intend to make a legislative proposal to regulate intra-EU phone calls and SMSs?

Parliament hereby calls on the Commission to set clear limits in this regard in its upcoming proposal for the revision of the telecoms framework.

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