BEREC Work Programme 2016 e-Publication

07 January 2016

The focus of BEREC activities in 2016 will be the upcoming review of the current European Regulatory Framework for electronic communications as important part of the “Digital Single Market” (DSM) Strategy and the respective legislative proposals announced by the European Commission for 2016. Furthermore, the BEREC work 2016 is significantly influenced and determined by the outcome of the “Telecom Single Market” (TSM) Package and the various tasks dedicated to BEREC in the field of Net Neutrality and international roaming. Taking this into account, the topics of the Work Programme 2016 are strongly influenced by the ongoing legislative process around the DSM initiative and the TSM agreement of 30th June 2015 to be implemented.

According to the BEREC Strategy 2015-2017, the Work Programme 2016 aims to continue and to develop the actions that were undertaken in 2015 in light of the three strategic pillars for BEREC´s activities: (A) promoting competition and investment, (B) promoting the internal market (C) empowering and protecting end-users. Since BEREC is constantly working to improve its working methods and the quality and timeliness of its output, another key area of the Work Programme is part (D) quality and operational efficiency.

The implementation of the Work Programme 2016, as in previous years, will be undertaken by Expert Working Groups (EWGs), comprised of experts from the NRAs who participate in BEREC as members or observers. Each EWG is essentially a drafting team, which addresses a number of topics, analyzing the relevant issues and preparing inter alia reports for discussion and adoption by the Board of Regulators (BoR). Work streams and deliverables are presented in section 3, under the three Strategic Priorities and regarding the Quality of BEREC’s output and operational efficiency. As a cross-cutting issue the Work Programme will give particular attention to end-user interests, including those of business customers, in the relevant work streams.

In addition to the specific work streams set out in the Work Programme 2016, BEREC anticipates continuous involvement in Article 7/7a Phase II cases, which need to be addressed, delivering relevant Opinions, at highest priority and within strict statutory deadlines. BEREC will also consider possible ad hoc requests for advice from the EU institutions (European Commission, Council and European Parliament) and will complete these requests appropriately and on time.

During 2016 legislative proposals are expected linked to the review of the framework as part of the DSM initiative. Against this background, BEREC may need to revise its work priorities during the course of the year in order to ensure that the work streams remain properly prioritized and resourced and that there will be the ability to react in an adequate way to new topics and ad-hoc requests in a timely manner.

With a view to the two-pillar approach consisting of the BoR supported by the BEREC Office, the support of the BEREC Office is of key importance for the success of the BEREC Work Programme 2016. Under the guidance of the Administrative Manager, the BEREC Office provides professional and administrative support services to BEREC and its EWGs. On the basis of a fully staffed office, the BEREC Office ensures to handle the increasing volume of work in an efficient, proactive and timely manner.

Finally, BEREC will continue to follow the approach whereby NRAs work together to elaborate Common Positions (CPs), guidelines and best practices. This well-established “bottom-up” approach, drawing on and informed by NRAs’ on-the-ground experience of the implementation and impact of regulation at the national level, is what makes BEREC’s outputs particularly valuable.