Big Internet companies are getting support from Europe’s umbrella organization of telecom regulators, BEREC, in their fight against the “network tax” that European telecom operators want to impose on them. This writes Reuters.
Major telecom operators like Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefonica and Telecom Italia want major platform providers, such as Google, Apple, Meta, Netflix, Amazon and Microsoft, to pay more to these operators. Especially since these companies account for almost half of the network traffic on telecom networks.
With the extra money, the telecom companies then plan to invest more in renewing and expanding their fixed Internet and 5G infrastructure.
BEREC against operators’ plans
BEREC says it is undesirable to set up a mandatory extra contribution to the development of the infrastructure of these telcos by big tech companies, writes Reuters.
European telecom operators would not currently be affected by the big tech companies, nor would end users suffer for their IP connections. In addition, an additional retransmission fee would do little to develop Internet infrastructure in member states to meet stated European goals.
Against net neutrality
Moreover, such a fee would favor large telecom operators. Especially those with proprietary streaming and/or cloud services. They could favor them, which goes against mandatory EU net neutrality.
Smaller operators would also be at a greater disadvantage, for example because they operate in a “lower” economic environment and have less bargaining power. Furthermore, an additional fee could lead to less investment from big tech providers.
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