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TELECOMMUNICATIONS: COMMISSION URGES MORE EFFORTS IN SPECTRUM POLICY.

The report looks at measures taken under the new telecoms package (in particular the Radio Spectrum Decision) to allocate the radio spectrum more efficiently, to expand the Single Market for innovative new radio-based technologies. This report to the Council and the European Parliament looks at the implementation of the Radio Spectrum Decision (RSD) since it was adopted in 2002.

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All radio-based devices use the radio spectrum to transmit or receive information. The use and therefore the value of the radio spectrum has expanded dramatically in recent years, as wireless applications have been very successful in addressing many of societys changing needs, such as for mobility and for data transmission. But spectrum availability is also critical for many other applications, e.g. for accurate weather forecasting, radio astronomy, air and maritime safety, broadcasting and for devices simplifying everyday life such as remote controls and hearing aids. Because of possible interference between different radio services operating in the same or adjacent frequencies, access to the radio spectrum has historically been closely regulated.

Spectrum management has long been seen as a otechnicalo domain dealing with the avoidance of harmful interference and the technical optimisation of spectrum use. More recently, it has been identified as a means of generating public revenues in proportion to a perceived ospectrum scarcityo value. However, a long-term, policy-based approach to the management of this resource aiming at fostering innovation and the introduction of increasingly added-value applications, says the Commission.

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The Radio Spectrum Decision aims to ensure a functioning Single Market for radio equipment and services, mainly by using spectrum effectively, developing spectrum policy to increase productivity via technological innovation, lowering barriers for access to spectrum, and supporting the competitiveness of the EU radio manufacturing and services sectors. The Commission has set up a Radio Spectrum Policy Group (RSPG) to advise it on key aims in the area of spectrum allocation, assignment and licensing conditions. Specific harmonised spectrum solutions have been developed by the Commission together with the Radio Spectrum Committee (RSC) of Member State experts in a number of areas. The first of these implementing measures, harmonising radio spectrum in the 79 GHz range for the use of automotive short range radars throughout the EU, was adopted in the form of a Commission Decision on July 8, 2004.

Planned measures.

Pursuant to Article 4.3 of the RSD, the Commission may adopt legally-binding decisions via technical implementing measures (TIMs) to meet the aims of the RSD, following preparatory work by CEPT and the opinion of the RSC. The Commission plans to use this opportunity by adopting its initial implementation decisions to harmonise deployment of the spectrum for automotive radars for RLAN (Radio Local Area Networks) and third-generation mobile communications.

Concerning legislative legacy, the Commission intends to request the European Parliament and the Council to withdraw the ERMES Directive (Directive 90/544/EEC of the Council, of October 9, 1990, on the frequency bands designated for the co-ordinated introduction of pan-European land-based public radio paging in the EU), and to provide for new harmonised uses for this frequency band via a technical implementing measure under Article 4.3 RSD. The Commission will also continue monitoring the future relevance of the other existing Council Directives on GSM and DECT (Directives 87/372/EEC and 91/287/EEC of the Council).
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Publication:European Report
Geographic Code:4E
Date:Jul 24, 2004
Words:549
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