- Working groups
Brussels, 7 July 2016 – ETNO, the Association representing Europe’s leading telecom operators, welcomes and endorses the “Manifesto for timely deployment of 5G in Europe” presented today in Brussels at an executive meeting hosted by Commissioner Günther Oettinger.
The Manifesto stems from the cooperation between the telecoms industry, the equipment manufacturers and those industrial sectors that are expected to benefit the most from 5G. ETNO companies strongly believe that 5G will deliver significant societal benefits both in terms of new consumer services and opportunities of economic growth. More in specific, it highlights the benefits in terms of digitising the EU, the next steps for standardisation and industry collaboration, as well as the required changes in policy and regulation.
Unlike past evolutions, 5G is expected to be much more than just another generation of mobile connectivity. 5G will be the main platform for digitising society and economy, by building on the convergence between mobile and fixed technologies, capable of delivering inclusive and highly customised services to a diverse range of users.
Because of the nature of 5G, the Manifesto has identified industry collaboration and broadband investment as two of the main challenges.
5G will require massive investment in both fixed and mobile networks. Network upgrades as well as roll-out of new networks will be required and the Manifesto calls for an “investment-centric policy framework” to boost 5G deployment.
In this context, signatories stress the importance of spectrum availability and harmonisation, as well as a pro-investment review of the Telecoms Regulatory Framework, especially in terms of incentivising investments in connectivity by all players and promoting innovation. More in specific, they point to 4 main ways of boosting investment: promoting “fewer and simpler rules”, that focus on non-replicable infrastructure only; encouraging “co-investment and risk sharing models”, allowing for a fair long-term return on investments; “withdrawing ex-ante regulation where appropriate” to create greater investment incentives and give priority to “long term commercial agreements that enable competitive outcomes”.
Along with the investment challenge, industry cooperation has also been identified as a crucial aspect. Collaboration will be needed not only between telecom companies, but also with the so called “industry verticals”. These include, for example, the automotive, logistics of healthcare industries, which are expected to digitally boost and re-think their businesses thanks to 5G.
The 5G Manifesto also highlights that the implementation of Open Internet rules must not result in a regulatory barrier to innovation. More in specific, it expresses serious concerns that the draft BEREC guidelines might hamper the development of services such as automated driving, smart grid control or virtual reality, which are expected to be enabled by the flexible and managed nature of networks.
Lise Fuhr, ETNO Director General, said: “5G means new opportunities and services for European citizens. It will increase digitisation and ensure that citizens are ubiquitously connected. Let’s remove regulatory barriers and ensure we have enough resources to make it a reality”.
Phillip Malloch, Chairman of the ETNO 5G Taskforce, said: “5G will support a wide and diverse range of customer needs. Current and future policies need to embrace new network functionalities and ensure we can serve as many customers as possible”.
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