The German regulatory authority Reg-TP has today issued a short (14 pages) consultation document entitled:

"Anhörung zu Voice over IP (VoIP)"

The consultation is a essentially set of 87 questions rather than a statement of proposed policy (policy formulation will follow after the consultation).

The consultation comprises questions on:

  • Current and planned VoIP services on the German market, and the technical platforms utilised to provide them.

  • Numbering and number portability. One of the questions is whether operators are satisfied with an earlier proposal to have a form of 'nationwide' (non-area-based) geographic numbers starting with 032.

  • Access and interconnection. One question is whether new interconnection interfaces should be defined. Another question is whether VoIP providers control access to the end-user (leading to the possible imposition of regulatory obligations).

  • The status of VoIP services and underlying networks, relating to the definition of public telecommunications network and the definition of publicly accessible telephone services. 

  • Obstacles (technical, commercial, etc.) to market entry and market development.

  • Market definition under the new EU regulatory framework. This section includes questions on substitutability with traditional telephony, and bundling of VoIP services with other services, such as Internet access.

  • Universal service and consumer protection.

  • Privacy and data protection.

  • Emergency services. This section includes questions on geo-location for emergency calls.

  • Lawful interception.

The full text of the Reg-TP consultation document can be accessed by clicking here.

The deadline for sending in responses to Reg-TP is 18 June 2004.