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DIGITALEUROPE calls on Members of the ITU to agree on a Treaty that does not hamper the future development of the Internet

Date

04 Dec 2012

Sections

Innovation & Enterprise
InfoSociety

BRUSSELS, Tuesday 4 December 2012: DIGITALEUROPE calls on Members of the ITU to agree on a Treaty that does not hamper the future development of the Internet.

The World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) starts in Dubai this week. As an industry association representing the voice of the European digital technology industry, DIGITALEUROPE published a position on WCIT in August 2012  (www.digitaleurope.org/IndustryGroups/DigitalEconomyGroup/MarketRegulation/Documents.aspx).

DIGITALEUROPE remains hopeful that ITU members will agree to review the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs) in a way that does not hamper the future development of the internet. The extraordinary success of the internet is not an accident, and in large part is due to its open and competitive nature, together with the decentralised and multi-stakeholder mechanism associated with its governance.

As Members of the ITU are now convening in Dubai to review the ITRs, DIGITALEUROPE would like to restate its positions and encourage all the ITU Member States delegations and, in particular, the delegations of Members States of the European Union, to agree to a Treaty that improves and does not expand the current ITRs:

  • DIGITALEUROPE deems it critical to preserve the global multi-stakeholder, market-based and decentralized nature of internet governance. This will ensure that the substantial benefits already gained will be maintained and reinforced.
  • DIGITALEUROPE believes the revision of the ITRs is an opportunity to enshrine high-level principles of international telecommunications which have underpinned the success of telecommunications liberalisation.
  • The ITRs should emphasise policy approaches that promote telecommunications liberalisation by introducing competition overseen by independent regulators, focusing on private sector leadership and relying upon market based agreements for telecommunications services.
  • DIGITALEUROPE believes the scope of the ITRs should not be expanded to cover more entities or organisations.
  • DIGITALEUROPE believes the ITRs should not be revised in a way that grants the ITU authority over the internet or develops an international regulatory treaty for the internet.
  • DIGITALEUROPE does not support mandating ITU Recommendations in the ITRs; rather ITRs should enshrine a commitment to open, voluntary industry standards.
  • DIGITALEUROPE believes proposals or mandates that would effectively mean regulating internet interconnect should be rejected: they run the serious risk of fragmenting the internet, cutting off the developing world from internet content and thereby widening the digital divide.
  • DIGITALEUROPE recognises that genuine concerns about online criminal activity are being raised within the ITU. However, DIGITALEUROPE believes it would be more effective for governments to take these concerns through more targeted actions and on-going initiatives to promote international cooperation on cyber-security, rather than through an international telecommunications treaty.

The participants to the WCIT-12 should look at ways to improve, and not expand, the ITRs.

DIGITALEUROPE looks forward to continuing our fruitful interaction with Member State delegations during the course of the Conference and to a successful outcome of the WCIT.

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Media and interview enquiries Jonathan Murray - DIGITALEUROPE, Director

T. +32 2 609 53 28

E. jonathan.murray@digitaleurope.org

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