GSMA welcomes European Commission’s ‘forward-looking’ leadership as consultation launches into Europe’s digital future

John Giusti, Chief Regulatory Officer at the GSMA, said: “In an increasingly digital world, Europe’s future economic success and social development will hinge on sustained investment in advanced communications networks. We applaud the European Commission’s launch of its forward-looking consultation on the future of the connectivity sector.

It is right that the Commission is focusing on the realities of today’s digital economy in considering ways to expand future innovation and investment within the European Union, for the benefit of its citizens and businesses.

As an integral part of the consultation, we commend the Commission’s leadership in initiating an honest discussion about the role that companies benefitting the most from use of European networks should play in contributing to infrastructure investment in Europe. Today, only a handful of companies are generating more than half of all the traffic running over European networks. Exponential growth in this traffic is going to require more and more network investment. We believe it is only fair that the companies generating the largest amounts of traffic on Europe’s networks should contribute to the required infrastructure investment. That burden should not fall entirely on the backs of European consumers and businesses.

We also welcome the proposed ‘Gigabit Infrastructure Act‘, set to serve as an effective pan-European instrument to accelerate network roll-out by reducing administrative barriers and costs.

Action is imperative. Without a fresh approach, Europe runs the risk of failing to deliver on its agreed Digital Decade targets, to the detriment of European citizens and the continent’s global competitiveness.

We look forward, alongside our members, to playing an active and constructive role in the consultation announced today. We welcome the chance to help shape a robust digital future for Europe.”