New Commission Decision to strengthen the cooperation between Ukraine and the EU in the field of electronic communications

Today, the Commission adopted a Decision authorising the national regulatory authority of Ukraine responsible for electronic communications to participate in the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the BEREC Office, which is the agency supporting BEREC. The Decision specifies the working arrangements: Ukraine’s regulatory authority will take part in the day-to-day work of BEREC’s Board of regulators, without the right to vote, while at the same time Ukraine may appoint experts to join in BEREC’s working groups in the areas of among others roaming, market regulation, and overall digital regulation. The Commission Decision is based on the association agreement between Ukraine and the EU, through which both sides have committed to supporting the alignment of Ukraine’s laws with EU electronic communications laws and to promoting cooperation between Ukraine’s national regulator and national regulators across the EU Member States. More information is available here. Thierry Breton, Commissioner for the Internal Market, said: “It is more important than ever to keep Ukraine as close as possible to the EU single market. I am therefore happy to welcome the Ukrainian regulator in BEREC. It will allow for closer cooperation on connectivity issues in the current emergency and will lay the groundwork for bringing Ukraine’s rules for electronic communications closer to the EU telecom framework.” Annemarie Sipkes, chair of BEREC, said: “BEREC and its member NRAs already established an excellent relationship with our colleagues from the NCEC, as was recently underlined by our cooperation regarding roaming tariffs and joint actions by Ukrainian and EU operators to ensure affordable connectivity for Ukrainian refugees. We’re very pleased to welcome the NCEC in our BEREC family to join us in our project to establish one European digital market, promoting full connectivity and empowering end-users.” Earlier this year, telecom operators based in the EU and in Ukraine signed a joint statement to secure and stabilise affordable or free roaming and international calls between the EU and Ukraine, thus helping Ukrainians displaced throughout Europe to stay in touch with family and friends back home and to have access to reliable information. The Commission and the European Parliament have facilitated this joint statement that BEREC is now monitoring.