This week, ITU and the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to formalize and deepen the partnership between the two organizations.
ITU and BEREC have common goals, like promoting investment and innovation in ICT infrastructures and services. This agreement will enable the sharing of global and regional perspectives through BEREC’s enhanced participation in ITU Study Groups, as well as aid countries covered by ITU’s Europe Office in their effort to align and harmonize with EU telecom regulations.
“Now more than ever, ITU and BEREC can make a difference in people’s lives in Europe and all around the world,” said ITU Secretary-General, Houlin Zhao.
Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, the Internet of Things and 5G are putting regulatory paradigms to the test.
At the same time, while hundreds of millions of new users are coming online every year, overall growth is slowing. It is important to find new ways to finance network roll-out and reach unconnected populations, including in rural and remote areas where there is less incentive for the private sector to invest.
Regulators everywhere are faced with new technologies and new business and investment models. In this context, moving towards a more open, collaborative and cross-sectoral regulation is critical to expanding the regulators’ ability to unlock investment to support growth, jobs and innovation.
ITU has developed the key concepts of ‘collaborative regulation’ and ‘fifth-generation regulation’ to describe the need for ICT policy and regulatory frameworks to be inclusive, up-to-date, flexible, incentive-based, evidence-based, decision-oriented and market-driven.
The signing of this Memorandum of Understanding reinforces this vision.
“Together, I am confident that we can expand avenues for investment in digital infrastructure, make ICT applications and services more relevant, secure and affordable − and give people here in Europe and elsewhere the tools and skills they need to navigate and succeed in the digital economy,” Mr Zhao said.
Editor’s note: To advance the discussion on the economic implications of future technologies and their applications to attain the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) — and the advances of regulatory costing and pricing strategies and business models in the digital economy — the ITU Regional Economic Dialogue on Information and Telecommunication Technologies (RED-2019) for Europe and CIS is being hosted in Odessa on 30-31 October 2019.
The very first collaborative ITU-BEREC event based on this new MoU will be the hosting a Regulatory Round Table on “Enabling Environment for 5G” on 27 November 2019 at the 5G Techritory – 2nd Baltic Sea Region 5G Ecosystem Forum.