The Belgian regulatory body BIPT has published a consultation document relating to a draft Royal Decree modifying various elements of telecommunications regulation (4 previous Royal Decrees) in order to facilitate market entry by Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs).

The consultation document includes the draft Royal Decree with the convoluted title:

 "Arrêté royal modifiant l’arrêté royal du 7 mars 1995 relatif à l’établissement et à l’exploitation de réseaux de mobilophonie GSM, l’arrêté royal du 24 octobre 1997 relatif à l’établissement et à l’exploitation de réseaux de mobilophonie DCS-1800, l’arrêté royal du 18 janvier 2001 fixant le cahier des charges et la procédure relative à l’octroi d’autorisations pour les systèmes de télécommunications mobiles de troisième génération et l’arrêté royal du 23 septembre 2002 relatif à la portabilité des numéros des utilisateurs finals des services de télécommunications mobiles offerts au public."

and explains the proposed changes to previous regulatory instruments, relating to GSM900/DCS1800/3G networks, and relating to number portability. It also addresses market access (the revised authorisation regime - see also our previous news item on this topic), interconnection and network access, and the role of the Mediation Service (Ombudsman) which is in charge of consumer protection for telecommunications services.

A very important innovation in this draft regulation is that it seeks to reduce the cost for small operators for participating in the number portability system in Belgium, which relies on a Common Reference Database Centre (CRDC), by introducing a special payment system.

The full text of the consultation document (French version; Dutch language version also available) can be accessed by clicking here.

Responses are due by 12 March 2004.