Earlier this year, we took a look at the implementation status of the European Electronic Communications Code (“EECC“) across the EU – see our previous Connect on Tech article.
As noted in that article, the majority of EU countries missed the 21 December 2020 deadline for national implementation, with only a handful implementing relevant legislation (although some only partially).
In response to those failures, the European Commission subsequently opened infringement procedures against the offending member states (see press release). As we understand it, the European Commission is still carrying out its review and is yet to publish any final decisions on those proceedings.
We’ve now followed up with our telecom regulatory teams across the EU to see what progress (if any) has been made during 2021.
The key takeaway seems to be that the European Commission proceedings have not necessarily sparked governments into action – whereas we’d previously expected all countries to have their legislation in place by mid-2021 this has not materialised, and we now anticipate that most countries still won’t have legislation in place til the beginning of Q4 2021 at the earliest.
There are some exceptions (namely France) and we set out further detail on this and other developments in key jurisdictions below:
- France: The relevant legislation transposing the EECC into national law (Order No. 2021-650) was published on 26 May 2021 and entered into force on 28 May 2021. The EECC is therefore now fully implemented in France.
- Germany: The relevant legislation transposing the EECC into national law, specifically the Telecommunications Modernisation Act (“TKMoG“) and the Data Protection and Protection of the Private Sphere in Electronic Communications and Telemedia Act (“TTDSG“), have now been adopted by the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) and approved by the Federal Council (Bundesrat). The TKMoG and TTDSG however will not enter into force until 1 December 2021, almost a full year after the original transposition deadline.
- Ireland: Progress has been relatively slow in Ireland. The Irish Government only recently met with industry stakeholders where it indicated that the draft implementation legislation is nearly complete. Government approval for the draft is expected in ‘early Autumn’, following which there will be a public consultation before it is finalised. Given that the Government and Irish Houses of Parliament are in recess until September it is likely that the public consultation will not commence until they return. This all suggests that relevant legislation will not be in place until late Q4 2021.
- Netherlands: As noted in our original article, implementation in the Netherlands was split with priority given to the access / switching provisions in the EECC. The implementation proposal for the remainder of the EECC was only published on 22 June 2021. This now starts the parliamentary discussions on implementation, with adoption of the proposal to follow. This is still likely to still take some time.
We set out below a map which gives a high level view of implementation status across all EU countries.
We will continue to monitor the status of EECC implementation and will publish a further update in the near future.
Please do get in touch if you require any further input on the matters described above.
(Input provided by the Baker McKenzie network and Mathesons in Ireland)