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PR(05)37: Liechtenstein facing Court action for failing to put in place new rules on electronic communications


Today, the EFTA Surveillance Authority decided to bring a matter, relating to the failure by Liechtenstein to implement the 2002 regulatory framework for electronic communications, to the EFTA Court in Luxembourg. With this step, the Authority follows suit to similar action launched by the European Commission against a number of EU Member States earlier last year.

The decision to bring the matter before the EFTA Court concerns non-transposition of the following EEA legislation into national law:

  • The Access Directive (2002/19/EC);
  • the Authorisation Directive (2002/20/EC);
  • the Framework Directive (2002/21/EC);
  • the Universal Service Directive (2002/22/EC); and
  • the Directive on competition in the markets for electronic communications networks and services (2002/77/EC).

This updated regulatory framework entered into force in the European Union in mid 2003. Its incorporation into the EEA Agreement had been delayed. However, Liechtenstein was under an obligation to transpose these Directives into national law before 1 November 2004. None of the said Directives have been implemented into national law as of yet.

The 2002 regulatory framework aims at further liberalising and harmonising the market for electronic communications networks and services in Europe. It provides for regulation with a lighter touch, allowing EEA States to roll back rules as soon as markets are competitive. Delays in the transposition and application of the new rules are detrimental to business and consumers and create disparity across the EEA.

For further information, please contact:
Mr. Tor Arne Solberg-Johansen, Senior Legal Officer, Legal & Executive Affairs
tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 66.

22 November 2005

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