Positions papers

Ericsson’s Director of Government & Industry Relations Rene Summer tells us about the “Networked Society” vision, and why the debates on jobs, copyright and demand-side policies are all linked.

“Invest in the jobs of the future, drive demand for ICT”

Read the interview here...

Leading MEP Catherine Trautmann tells ETNO Digital about her vision for the Next Term. A 360° interview on regulation, competition, Connected Continent and the review of the Framework.

“Old world policies must evolve: we need a new approach to the digital era”

Read the interview here...

ETNO Annual Economic Report 2013


The ETNO Annual Economic Report shows that ETNO members are the driving force of Europe’s telecommunications sector. With a 77.3% share of the total sector employment and a 61% share of the total sector investments, ETNO operators are at the forefront in the global race to empower EU citizens, businesses and public administrations with world class connectivity.

Figures from IDATE also draw a clear picture of the state of the European telecoms industry: 2012 has seen a continuation of the negative growth trend that has affected the region's telecom revenues since 2009. Europe faces challenges in the investments race too: in the period 2011-2012 the overall CAPEX growth in the EU was negative (-0.2%), compared to strong growth in the US (+6.7%) and Japan (+7.5%).

A pro-investment policy environment and a consolidated regulatory framework are needed in order to allow the European telecoms industry to contribute to growth and jobs in the EU. The telecoms industry holds centre-court and policy makers recognise that it is time to push Europe to the front of the competitive edge and regain its status as a global digital leader.

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Reforming Europe's Telecoms Regulation to Enable the Digital Single Market

The study, Reforming Europe's Telecoms Regulation to Enable the Digital Single Market, details how a reformed regulatory framework can both safeguard competition as well as incentivize the investments in advanced next-generation access networks (NGA) required for the EU to reach its Digital Agenda targets and for the European Digital Single Market to become a reality.

Click to read the Boston Consulting Group studyWhile it has long been a leader in innovation and the technologies that comprise the backbone of the digital economy, Europe has fallen behind in ultrafast mobile and fixed Internet connectivity. Many markets in Asia and North America enjoy fibre access penetration that is up to 20 times higher and penetration of LTE that is as much as 35 times greater. The BCG study projects that by 2020 the shortfall in investment needed to meet EU Digital Agenda targets for broadband coverage and penetration could aggregate between €110 billion and €170 billion. The result for European consumers and businesses is slower, less reliable connections, leading to less value for consumers and lower economic growth.

The study proposes five measures that will reverse the regulatory root causes of lagging telecommunications investment and help to unlock the funding required to build the ultra-fast connectivity that is increasingly the lifeblood of the digital economy:

1. Substantial deregulation of fixed-line wholesale access
2. A level playing field for network operators and digital services providers
3. Spectrum policy that accelerates the build-out of mobile networks
4. Permitting healthy consolidation in mobile
5. Harmonizing rules and procedures to unlock cross-country synergies

Taken together, BCG estimates that these five measures would increase telecom operator cash flows by a cumulative total of €105 billion to €165 billion by 2020 and asserts that a significant portion of these funds would be available for additional investment in next-generation networks. Along with the rollout cost savings that DG Connect initiatives, such as the pending "less digging = more broadband" regulation, are expected to deliver, this program would significantly close Europe’s next-generation network investment gap, fuel growth and add jobs, and bring the goal of a vibrant Digital Single Market much closer to reality.

Click here to download the study.

A Future Policy Framework for Growth

Click to read the Diversity at Work (EN) study

Telecommunications is one of Europe's most important economic sectors. Its largest companies have invested in building businesses in every continent. The services it provides—in particular the broadband and wireless infrastructure underpinning the Internet—are central to many other sectors of the economy and to the daily lives of almost every citizen. Its history of innovation and growth has been trumpeted as a major achievement of the European Single Market.

Yet financial performance has lagged of late, because of an imbalance between those investing in the Internet and those benefiting from its impressive growth; an erosion of the industry's pricing structures as over-the-top (OTT) substitutes bypass existing tariff structures that charge for voice and messaging bypassed by over-the-top (OTT) substitutes; a fragmented sector that restricts innovation and increases costs; and an adverse climate of regulatory price cuts, restrictions on commercial strategy, and high taxation of essential spectrum. On the positive side, demand for the industry's core offering—communications—is growing dramatically. The adoption of new services—from videoconferencing to social media—is accelerating in all demographic segments, powered by rapid technology evolution in network infrastructure, services, and devices.

Against this backdrop, A.T. Kearney has researched the health of the European industry, its plans and prospects to return to growth, and the contribution that the policy framework can make. We cooperated with the industry association ETNO, interviewing many of its members (and some operators that are not members) and discussing our findings with ETNO's leadership, but this report is an independent report that does not necessarily represent the views of ETNO or its members. In this report, we offer these findings as a contribution to an important debate on the future of the industry. This discussion is active in the policy arena: the European Commission has recently demonstrated an important realignment in its thinking on fibre investment and the related wholesale price regulation, and it will shortly review key market definitions and issue recommendations on non-discrimination and costing methodologies. All governments have been debating revisions to the treaty governing international communications via the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

Many industry players are considering how their businesses must evolve to remain competitive in the marketplace and attractive to investors. Each company will pursue its own strategy, and inevitably some will do so more successfully than others, but each of them, we believe, must address three broad strategic imperatives:

  1. Break out of the deflationary price spiral and move to pricing models that better reflect the value for the customer
  2. Raise the effectiveness of innovation and launch new services that can compete with global champions
  3. Move beyond the pursuit of incremental efficiency gains and pursue the path of consolidation and transformation common to maturing, capital-intensive industries

For each of these, the policy framework in Europe must evolve—not to disappear nor to substitute the work of management and investors, but to eliminate roadblocks and create a level playing field.

Click here for ATKearney's report.

  • 06 February, 2014 posted by ETNO

    “Invest in the jobs of the future, drive demand for ICT” - ETNO interviews Rene Summer of Ericsson

    Ericsson’s Director of Government & Industry Relations Rene Summer tells us about the “Networked Society” vision, and why the debates on jobs, copyright and demand-side policies are all linked.

  • 30 January, 2014 posted by ETNO

    “Old world policies must evolve: we need a new approach to the digital era”

    Leading MEP Catherine Trautmann tells ETNO Digital about her vision for the Next Term. A 360° interview on regulation, competition, Connected Continent and the review of the Framework.

  • 14 January, 2014 posted by ETNO

    2014: EU telecom operators are ready to build a Smarter Europe - ETNO’s open letter to the Greek Presidency of the European Union

    ETNO welcomes the priorities for the telecommunications sector set by the Greek Government for its presidency. ETNO will actively cooperate with the Greek presidency so that it can deliver by 30 June on these measures, which will be key for Europe’s society and economy. One of the measures laid down in the Working Programme is the mid-term review of the “Digital Agenda for Europe”. ETNO is committed to work with the Presidency to ensure that this review sets an ambitious agenda to unleash EU’s potential to invest and innovate at continental and global levels, and inspire visionary leadership accordingly. Such a review must start by setting the priority of a profound revision of the rules for the e-communications sector. 2014 is the year in which we must speed up our effort towards building a Smarter Europe and ETNO is ready to help Europe becoming a fully connected continent.


July 2012 - ETNO Annual Report 2011

How to improve conditions for private investments in next access generation networks and accelerate the achievement of the Digital Agenda targets were the main underlying themes of ETNO activities in 2011 described in ETNO Annual Report 2011 issued today.

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ETNO first annual economic report

With a total revenue of € 274.9 billion in 2010, the European telecoms service market decreased by 1.4% despite slow economic recovery (+ 3.5% for current GDP in the region) showing that structural rather than cyclical changes are shaping the sector. Furthermore, Europe's share of the global telecoms market has been declining regularly over recent years, from 33% in 2004 to just over 27% in 2010. Telcos' investments in Europe were up 2.3% in 2010 to € 44.5 billion but remained low compared with spending during the years before 2009.

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ETNO Sustainability Report 2012

In its 2012 Sustainability Report entitled "Driving the Sustainable Future", ETNO measures the performance of the signatories of the ETNO Sustainability Charter for the period 2009-2010. The report shows an overall reduction of CO2 emissions despite an increase in electricity demand. The report also shows an increased engagement of operators with their suppliers to ensure the respect of sustainability principles throughout the value chain.

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Members & Observers

Albtelecom Belgacom Eircom Elisa Communications Corporation GO Plc (Malta) Hrvatski Telekom Koninklijke KPN Lattelecom Magyar Telekom Makedonski Telekom Orange OTE Portugal Telecom Societatea Nationala de Radiocomunicatii (SNR) Síminn (Iceland Telecom Ltd.) Slovak Telecom Swisscom TDC TDF Telecom Liechtenstein Telecom Italia Telefónica Telefonica Czech Republic Telekom Austria Telekom Slovenije Telekomunikacja Polska Telenor TeliaSonera Teo Lt Turk Telekom Vivacom Deutsche Telekom AG CYTA (Cyprus Telecommunications Authority) BH Telecom POST Group