Paris, 13 February 2003
The European Commission has released its Recommendation regarding relevant markets susceptible to ex ante sector-specific regulation under the terms of the Framework Directive of 7 March 2002.
Under the new regulatory framework, National Regulatory Authorities will carry out market analyses, in light of this recommendation, in order to identify operators with significant market power and to propose the appropriate specific obligations to be imposed on them.
ART is preparing to initiate these analyses during the first half of 2003, in order to be able - at least as pertains to collecting market information - to meet the requirements of the framework directive, which will have to be applied on the basis of new legislative measures to be examined by Parliament in coming months.
This process will require an in-depth understanding of how the telecommunications markets operate in France and a thorough dialogue with consumers and operators, and their associations. It will also require interaction with the Competition Council (Conseil de la concurrence).
It will include the following phases:
- a quantitative and qualitative market survey phase in order to determine the position of operators on the markets and to identify any barriers to effective competition
- a public consultation phase which will present the major elements resulting from the surveys of the first phase and will submit the proposed measures for ex ante regulation for comments
The structure set up by ART
The implementation of this market analysis process will also require the coordinated mobilisation of many persons, who, because of their positions are directly or indirectly involved in these markets and their regulation.
In order to coordinate the analyses and protect their consistency, ART has set up a project structure led by Ingrid Malfait, who will be assisted by Cécile Gaubert.
A specific cell has also been made responsible for collecting quantitative data.
The timetable and consultation structures
ART is fully aware of the importance of the analyses it will be required to perform. For this reason, it wishes to involve all players or observers interested in the functioning of the telecommunications market in France: operators, operator associations, service provider associations, consumer representatives, and economic and legal experts. In doing this, it will involve existing consultation structures: Comité de l’interconnexion, Commission consultative des réseaux et services de télécommunications, and Commission consultative des radiocommunications. It also plans to form a specific working group.
ART is conscious of the need for an in-depth information phase prior to initiating any market analyses. Therefore, ART will begin the first phase as follows:
- The process will be presented in early March. At this meeting, ART will present its understanding of those markets in France targeted by the recommendation. It will also give a general outline of the surveys it plans to conduct.
- The quantitative and qualitative surveys will be launched in late March; the sector will have two months in which to submit its responses.
- Surveys will be returned in late June. At this time, ART will present its timetable for the rest of the process.
All interested persons and organisations are invited to present their initial reactions to the general process put in place as well as submit any contributions to ART. A specific mailbox has been created for this purpose: firstname.lastname@example.org