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 Background  Why the ITRs are important  The need to revise the ITRs  Preparatory process  Some key proposals  Myths and misinformation 

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Presentation on theme: " Background  Why the ITRs are important  The need to revise the ITRs  Preparatory process  Some key proposals  Myths and misinformation "— Presentation transcript:





5  Background  Why the ITRs are important  The need to revise the ITRs  Preparatory process  Some key proposals  Myths and misinformation  Expectations for WCIT-12  Useful links

6 Background: origin of the ITRs

7 The International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs):  Establish general principles on the provision and operation of international telecoms  Facilitate global interconnection and interoperability  Underpin harmonious development and efficient operation of technical facilities  Promote efficiency, usefulness, and availability of international telecommunication services  Treaty-level provisions are required for international networks and services The ITRs underpin how we communicate with each other by phone or computer, with voice, video or data, and across the globe. Why the ITRs are important

8 Article 1: Purpose Article 2: Definitions Article 3: Right to communicate at good technical quality; countries to coordinate their infrastructure Article 4: International telecom services to be made available to the public Article 5: Priority to be given to emergency communications Article 6: Charges for services, and accounting rates between carriers Article 7: Suspension of services when “dangerous for national security, or contrary to national laws, public order or decency.” Article 8: ITU to gather and circulate information on suspended services Article 9: Special arrangements not affecting all countries Article 10: Entry into force; reservations What is in the ITRs?

9 Only governments can implement the ITRs, through national legislation or regulation There have been NO proposals for a global body to impose implementation of the ITRs The ITRs coordinate, countries implement

10 The current version of the ITRs has remained unchanged since 1988. 1988 2012 ITRs (came into force in 1990) The ITRs need to be revised In 1988, there were very few countries with a liberalized market. Most operators were a monopoly regime, under government or state control

11  The international telecom environment has changed greatly in technology and policy. It continues to evolve rapidly Shift from fixed to mobile, from voice to data as the drivers of traffic and main sources of revenue The ITRs need to be revised  Increased use of IP-enabled infrastructure and applications mean opportunities and challenges for the ICT sector  As technology evolves, governments are evaluating their policy and regulatory approaches to ensure an enabling environment

12  Council Working Group to Prepare for the WCIT 12 (CWG-WCIT12) held three meetings in 2010, two in 2011, and three in 2012 (in February, April and June)  Regional preparatory meetings were held in the Asia-Pacific, Africa, Arab region, RCC (CIS Countries), Europe, and Americas – all open also to Sector Members  124 input documents have been submitted by the ITU membership; over 450 proposals under consideration The preparatory process for WCIT-12

13 Wide consultations on the issues with: ITU Member States (193) Private-sector members of ITU (567) Associates and academic members of ITU (217) Civil society – through such venues as the WSIS Forum On the ITU website: WCIT Background Briefs and FAQs ( Pages/WCIT-backgroundbriefs.aspx) Site for anyone to post opinion or material on WCIT-12 ( The preparatory process for WCIT-12

14 Convergence Human right to communication including fair & equitable accessuse of networks & services Charging and accounting - including taxation (Market-based costing, Llberalization of international gateways, Transparency obligations on ROAs) Quality of Service Security in the use of ICTs including privacy and preventing spam Protection of critical national resources Including communication networks Interconnection and interoperability International frameworks Enforcement measures (including possible binding effect of certain ITU Recommendations) Proposals made during preparatory process

15  What core principles should guide discussions?  Do some provisions belong elsewhere? (e.g. ITU Constitution/Convention, ITU-T Recommendations)  What provisions should be added to cover new issues? Key Issues

16  Mobile roaming  Misuse and fraud  Taxation  Transparency of routing  New general principles on economic issues  Allowing differentiated traffic management  Cooperation on cybersecurity  Cooperation to combat spam  Energy efficiency  Accessibility All to be implemented by national authorities Some key proposals

17  Helping to prevent “bill shock”  Transparency of prices for users  Price levels could be capped  Draft ITU-T Recommendation D.98  OECD Recommendations Proposals: Mobile Roaming

18 Preventing misuse/hijacking of numbering resources  According to GSMA, such misuse is a major factor in fraud against mobile networks and their customers  It is used for fraudulent and artificial inflation of traffic Combating fraud  Identifying the origin of communications and sending this information to the receiver Proposals: Misuse and Fraud

19  Clarify existing provision to prevent international double taxation (carriers being taxed twice for the same asset or service because it operates in two jurisdictions)  Prevent or discourage taxation of incoming international calls (A delicate issue because there is a trade-off between raising revenue and encouraging the use of telecommunications) Proposals: Taxation

20  Price transparency  Cost orientation, presumably cost intended to include: Return on investment (including dividends to stock owners) Taxes Creation of reserves for future investments Risk premiums Etc. Proposals: new general principles

21 Foster investment in high-bandwidth infrastructure Adequate return on investment in infrastructure Compensation for traffic carried Compensation for traffic terminated No proposals to create new international regulatory agencies or mechanisms Proposals that national authorities should implement the ITRs First, ratification of new ITRs in accordance with national procedures, then, transposition into national laws and regulations Possibly, new or revised ITU-T Recommendations Proposals: new general principles


23 1/13 FACTS: Many ITU standards (including ones under development) relate to data networks The first standardized data network was ITU’s X.25, developed in 1976, widely used until the 1990s and still used for specialized networks X.25 is a packet-switched, connection-oriented architecture End-user data network access devices (modems, xDSL) have long been based on ITU standards The ITU development sector activities cover all aspects of telecommunications, including in particular data networks The ITU radio sector activities cover all aspects of radio communications, including satellites Myth: The mandate of ITU is restricted to telephony

24 Myth: ITU’s scope does not include the Internet FACT: The ITU Constitution defines telecommunications as: “Any transmission, emission or reception of signs, signals, writing, images and sounds or intelligence of any nature by wire, radio, optical or other electromagnetic systems.” Many consider that this includes communications via the Internet, which runs on telecom infrastructure 2/13

25 FACTS: Numerous ITU Resolutions, (e.g. 101, 102, and 133) specify ITU’s mandate with respect to the Internet Numerous ITU-T Recommendations relate to the Internet, including on combating spam WCIT’s main preparatory document includes NO proposals related to ITU control of Internet domain names or IP addresses Some older proposals referred to IP addresses Some current proposals relate to routing (including of IP traffic) and to billing (including of IP traffic) 3/13 Myth: WCIT is about ITU or the UN extending their mandate so as to control the Internet

26 FACTS: All Internet traffic moves under Art. 9 of the ITRs An existing ITU-T Recommendation, and its Supplement, concern charging and accounting for the Internet Some proposals could affect the way costs are shared between users and suppliers 4/13 Myth: WCIT may extend the scope of ITU to include charging and accounting for Internet traffic

27 FACTS: The ITU Constitution (Art. 34) gives Member States the right to cut off, in accordance with national laws, any private telecommunications which may appear dangerous to the security of the State or contrary to its laws, to public order or to decency The ITRs cannot override or conflict with the Constitution There is a proposal to ensure that interception and monitoring of international telecommunications be subject to due process authorized in accordance with national laws Provisions on transparency of routing and call identification might facilitate some types of oversight by governments 5/13 Myth: WCIT is about imposing censorship

28 FACTS: There are proposals to: - encourage cooperation to combat spam - improve network security and the protection of privacy In Article 33 of ITU’s Constitution, Member States recognize the right of the public to correspond through international telecommunications Most countries already have measures to e.g. protect copyright owners, prevent defamation, etc. Such measures are permitted by Article 34 of the ITU’s Constitution The ITRs cannot contradict the Constitution 6/13 Myth: Proposals related to security could hinder the free flow of information

29 FACTS: There are proposals to: limit roaming prices - based on costs, prices in the visited country, or prices in the home country ensure transparency of prices, wholesale and retail, in general and for roaming encourage cost-based pricing ensure transmission of calling party identifiers combat fraud, especially from misuse of telephone numbers improve access for people with disabilities 7/13 Myth: Consumer interests could be harmed by WCIT

30 FACTS: Many Recommendations (standards) were widely considered to be binding prior to 1988 In other fields, it is common for laws or regulations to give binding force to standards developed by private organizations: electricity, plumbing, accounting, etc. Recommendations can only be made mandatory if a national authority makes them so 8/13 Myth: Proposals to give binding force to certain ITU-T Recommendations are unprecedented

31 FACTS: The ITU Secretariat serves the wishes of the membership. All discussions are based on proposals from ITU Member States There have been wide consultations, including beyond the ITU membership 124 input documents were submitted to the WCIT preparatory process. After discussion, over 450 individual proposals were retained for Member States to use when preparing their proposals Countries can compose their delegations at WCIT-12 as they wish. They usually include ITU Sector Members, and may include any other organization, whether an ITU member or not 9/13 Myth: WCIT is a top-down process

32 FACTS: All ITU members have full access to all WCIT documents and audiocasts of discussions Member States are expected and encouraged to consult their citizens and give them access to WCIT documents, preferably in the national language ITU offers information on its website, and a space for any stakeholder to add comments The conference plenary sessions and some committee meetings will be open to the public (to be formally decided on the opening day) 10/13 Myth: The WCIT process is not open or transparent

33 FACTS: All of the ITU’s 193 Member States have equal rights: the principle is one nation, one vote No proposal will be accepted unless it has wide support Decisions can be made by majority vote, but this is very unusual: decisions are usually made by consensus Each country is free to refuse to sign or to ratify the finally agreed text from WCIT-12 11/13 Myth: WCIT could be dominated by authoritarian countries

34 FACTS: Many ITU Member States are developing countries, and their representatives are well informed and well prepared to represent the interests of their citizens One of ITU’s top priorities is to spread connectivity to every community – especially broadband. WCIT-12 is an opportunity to establish a framework to support this into the future 12/13 Myth: WCIT could result in decisions that are bad for developing countries

35 FACTS: Organized lobbying groups have been active Many articles concerning WCIT repeat the same misinformation, at times in the same words Documents have been leaked selectively Documents are described as concerning WCIT, when in fact they have no formal relation to WCIT There are many articles and other comments giving a balanced and positive view 13/13 Myth: There has been a spontaneous wave of protest against WCIT

36  WCIT-12 is a key opportunity to increase positive collaboration among countries  It can help countries reach new levels of economic and social development through better ICT services  The aim is to make the ITRs relevant and valuable to all stakeholders, so that they address and alleviate many current concerns  It is an opportunity – not to be missed - to create a pathway to a sustainable and inclusive global communication system of the future Expectations for WCIT-12

37 WCIT-12 website: WCIT Background Briefs and FAQs: ITU Council working group CWG-WCIT12: Draft of the future ITRs, and site for public comments: Useful links


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