Organisations and Institutions
[G4-Dma public policy] Telecom Italia is determined to continue its collaborative and transparent relations with national and supranational institutions in order to facilitate dialogue on matters of mutual interest and to ensure the Group’s viewpoint is faithfully represented.
Our target audiences in this respect are:
- central national institutions: Parliament, Government, Ministries, Public Administration;
- local institutions and their associations:
- AGCOM, AGCM, the Italian Data Protection Authority; Electricity, Gas and Water System Authority
- European and international institutions: EC, European Council and Parliament, BEREC1 , OECD2 , UN3 , Global Compact, UNEP4 , UNFCCC5 , ITU6 and other UN agencies.
Central and national institutions
Lobbying activities are principally conducted with the parliamentary committee members of the upper and lower houses of the Italian parliament concerned with issues that could impact on the company, including those of an economic and financial nature or concerning privacy, telecommunications, Internet and TV. Involvement in parliamentary hearings is also a way of examining specific issues in detail and creating opportunities for discussion about matters being debated in parliament.
The monitoring of law-making activity among institutions often leads to amendments to individual measures being proposed. Moreover, Telecom Italia provides information to ministries (mainly the Ministry of Economic Development) regarding the activities of the inspection body (parliamentary questions) directed at the Group.
National legislative activity specifically monitored by Telecom Italia during 2015 mainly concerned draft legislation being examined by the Italian parliament and the law decrees introduced by the Renzi government which might have an impact on the electronic communications sector.
The approval process of the following legislative measures was therefore monitored on a constant basis:
- Law No. 115 of July 29, 2015 “European Law 2014”, which contains a provision regarding administrative rights in the communication sector: the provision, which is aimed at ending European Commission infringement proceedings no.
- 2013/4020, identifies the activities performed by the Ministry of Economic Development (MISE) and AGCOM, to be funded by a contribution levied on operators (confirming the existing contribution mechanism), and introduces the duty for the Ministry of Economic Development and AGCOM to publish an annual report on the costs incurred in performing the activities for which they are respectively responsible.
- Ministry of the Environment Decrees (implementing Decree Law 179/2012 or ”Growth Bis Decree”) which contain:
- guidelines regarding the procedures for the supply of performance data of radio mobile systems by operators and for determining the power reduction factors of the systems themselves;
- guidelines on determining the electromagnetic field absorption values of buildings. These guidelines are particularly important for operators, as they are indented to facilitate the effective deployment of LTE/4G networks;
- Draft law to reform Chapter V of the Constitution, currently before Parliament, which abolishes the so-called “concurrent legislative power” of the State and Regions and places communication under the exclusive legislative control of the State. This change to the constitution is intended to overcome the dispute between the State and the Regions over the legislative responsibility for regulating this matter, with particular reference to the installation of fixed and mobile electronic communication infrastructure.
- Law No. 183 of December 10, 2014 on employment policy, known as the “Jobs Act”, which provides, among other things, for a powers to be granted to the government to reform the rules on solidarity contracts. Particular focus was placed by the Group particularly on the process of approval of the respective implementation decrees, and in particular on the one containing “Provisions for the reorganisation of legislation regarding social safety nets during employment” (Legislative Decree No. 148 of September 14, 2015), which changes the concept of solidarity contracts as the causative factor of extraordinary temporary unemployment compensation and makes them subject to the respective rules. The legislative decree also essentially reintroduces the previous system of so-called “expansive” solidarity contracts.
- 2016 Stability Law (Law 208/2015) which contains several interesting general provisions on tax and welfare, including: extension (introduced by the Stability Law 2015) of the de-contribution in favour of employers, for new permanent staff appointments in 2016; extension of the tax reduction (reduced by 10%), for 2016, on worker productivity salaries, for incomes of up to 50,000 euros; the provision reducing corporate income tax by three percentage points for 2016 and by a further half a point in 2017; provisions aimed at strengthening the centralised purchasing of goods and services by public administrations for certain recurring categories of goods and services, and aimed at rationalising public administration procurement processes for ICT goods and services. The law contains numerous social security provisions, including: measures to protect workers from the increase in requirements for access to the existing pension system; extension to 2016 of an experimental system for women who intend to stop working (applying the contribution system, with 35 years of contributions and 57/58 years of age); introduction of rules aimed at actively supporting the gradual retirement of older private sector workers (through forms of part-time work).
- Annual draft law on competition, currently before Parliament, which contains provisions of specific interest to the company regarding: elimination of restrictions to switching to another electronic communication and audiovisual media supplier; maximum 24-month duration of contracts including promotional offers; duty for telephone service operators to obtain proof of prior consent from customers when charging for subscription services offered by third parties; simplification of the procedures for identifying customers when switching between mobile phone operators.
- Draft law regarding class action, currently before Parliament, aimed at strengthening this protection mechanism, which would introduce new rules for compensatory class action by broadening the objective and subjective scope and establishing financial incentives for the person bringing the action.
- Law No. 124 of August 7, 2015, containing “Delegated powers assigned to the Government to reorganise public administration”, including delegated powers assigned to the Government to issue (within 8 months of the law coming into force) one or more legislative decrees to restructure and rationalise expenditure on telephone tapping services, and expenditure on the use of such services. One of the principles by which the Government must abide in exercising these delegated powers is that the review of the price list of mandatory services must take account of the costs and services, in order to achieve a cost saving of at least 50% on the rates stated in the existing price list. The public administration reform law also introduces, among the guiding principles of the powers delegated to the Government, the one according to which digital and electronic payments made in any form, including the use of phone credit for micropayments, shall be the main form of payment to public administration bodies and public service operators.
Also the subject of specific monitoring was the Government Plan (approved on March 3, 2015 by the Council of Ministers) regarding the Italian Broadband and digital growth strategy 2014-20200. The two strategies aim to bridge the digital divide in the country, in terms of both infrastructure and services, in order to achieve the objectives of the European Digital Agenda. Specifically, the New National Broadband Plan proposes to remedy the infrastructure gap by creating the most favourable conditions for the integrated development of fixed and mobile telecommunication infrastructure, through a series of actions, including a mix of public-private investments, in which the public sector will be involved through the use of several tools and will be calibrated differently according to the area and the commercial attractiveness for private operators.
Finally, the company is also monitoring some parliamentary hearings, including the one which took place in the Transport, Post and Telecommunications Committee on audiovisual and radio broadcasting services. The purpose of these hearings was to determine whether existing legislation is appropriate to regulate the technological convergence between traditional television broadcasting and internet services, with the option to use audiovisual content on multiple platforms; in this context, Telecom Italia was also summoned for a hearing on March 10, 2015.
Local national institutions
[G4-DMA Indirect Economic Impacts] At local level, Telecom Italia maintains constant dialogue with institutions on subjects of a general nature regarding the electronic communications sector, with particular reference to network development and to other issues of interest to the company’s business. The aim is to resolve any issues encountered, to guide the local law-making process in such a way that it respects the national reference framework, to promote the Group’s image and represent its position regarding these issues. The dialogue takes place both directly with local authorities and with their representative associations: ANCI and UPI.
Monitoring and constant interaction with the decision-making centres of local institutions take place by means of hearings, including the presentation of position documents relating to the drafting of local regulations, and involvement in workshops as well as in the work of regional commissions and ministerial and specialist work groups. Furthermore, Telecom Italia frequently organises communication initiatives on specific issues of local interest.
Coordination with the company departments operating at the local level is fundamental for the purpose of acquiring information regarding the approaches and expectations of local institutions and providing suitable solutions.
Among the main subjects of dialogue with local authorities during 2015 we would highlight the following:
- the development of new ultrabroadband networks (NGAN - Next Generation Access Network) and the new LTE (Long Term Evolution) standard; local coverage and increasing the digital inclusion;
- the drawing-up of protocols with local authorities in order to promote the use of non-invasive techniques (mini-trenches) during excavation work, particularly in order to speed up the development of new generation access network coverage;
- draft regional laws and municipal regulations regarding the installation of mobile telephony systems and electromagnetic fields (e.g. Umbria Law, Municipality of Rome Regulation, Municipality of Florence Town Planning Regulation, Venice Town Planning Regulation), in order to represent the company’s requirements (particularly by submitting comments and amendments and participating in hearings) in a way that allows all the various interests involved to coexist, with a view to simplifying rules and standardising the relevant national provisions;
- proposed excavation rules, in order to ensure the consistency of the authorisation process and the respective regulations with the relevant national regulations, particularly in order to ensure increased simplification at local level;
- the removal of public telephone equipment (telephone booths) which involved public consultation as part of a procedure agreed with AGCOM;
- promotion of Telecom Italia’s digital inclusion initiatives to facilitate the learning of new technologies and their proper use, particularly by seeking new forms of partnership with municipalities as well as other partnerships and sponsorships;
- dissemination of digital innovation and culture, particularly by promoting agreements/partnerships with public administrations;
- promotion of Telecom Italia’s system of digital services for the creation of smart cities and particularly support for the cities of Genoa, Turin, Milan, Naples and Florence. In this respect, we should mention: our involvement in the activities of the Genoa Smart City association and in the Torino Wireless Foundation (a technological ICT district involving national and local institutions, universities and research centres, businesses and financial institutions), our cooperation with the Municipality of Turin and the Torino Smart City Foundation for the presentation of joint projects that can be implemented within the Smart City initiatives framework;
- the performance of digital teaching test at a number of schools in the Lombardy Region, following the signing of a protocol with l’USR Lombardy;
- the performance of research activities in cooperation with the Bocconi University, aimed at studying urban agendas in eight Italian municipalities: Bergamo, Cuneo, Ferrara, Belluno, Pescara, Ancona, Taranto, Siracusa;
- the drafting of regional policy reports aimed at taking stock of the current situation and the evolution of regional policy regarding digital services, network infrastructure and smart cities. In the third edition, 2015, significant enhancements were introduced with the addition of further information plus a new chapter which summarises regional development programmes of a strategic and economic nature in light of the new 2014-2020 programme of EU funds available. The 2015 edition is currently being prepared and the analysis of all Italian regions is expected to be completed during the first few months of 2016.
European and international institutions
Relations with European and supranational institutions are both institutional (e.g. participation in discussion platforms, public consultations, workshops, meetings of parliamentary committees) and collaborative (meetings with the European Commission, Permanent Representatives of EU Member States, the European Parliament, Agencies or working groups and specialised studies under the auspices of EU institutions, including the Centre for European Policy Studies, etc.). The company’s position in respect of BEREC and the European Commission is asserted through individual action and/or with the involvement of other operators.
Among the issues tackled at European level, which were the subject of the main legislative/regulatory provisions relevant to the Group, we would mention for example: the regulatory framework review, which involves a review of the network access obligations, a reform of the universal service, and a review of the institutional structure of the powers of the Commission and BEREC in implementing the new framework; the review involves a complex process of adoption in which the Parliament and the Council will be required to adopt new rules around 20200. Telecom Italia is actively participating in numerous public consultations launched by the EC and BEREC based on the Single Digital Market strategy (and the Single Market strategy), particularly the consultations on the review of the telecommunication framework, online platforms and the role of intermediaries, the role of Over the Tops (OTTs) and the regulation of Internet of Things (IoT) services. Of particular note are also the new data protection regulation, participation in the stakeholder table for drafting the new rules on online purchases, the procedures for notification of the decisions of National Regulatory Authorities to the Commission pursuant to article 7 of framework directive, the implementation of the new Recommendation on Relevant Markets, the BEREC public consultation documents and the regulatory framework interpretation and implementation documents discussed and adopted in the context of the BEREC annual work programme, the review of the Directive on Payment Services, involvement in the expert groups on Cloud Computing (C-SIG) with regard to the drafting of Service Level Agreement - SLA -, of a Code of Conduct on the protection of personal data in the cloud environment and the drafting of standard contract clauses for cloud services, the process of adopting the new Directive on cyber-security and the NIS (Network and Information Security) Platform, the new regulation on electronic identity and trust services and respective implementation measures.
Telecom Italia is also particularly active in European and international discussions relating to the distribution of digital content and the protection of rights, particularly on issues such as the review of copyright in the digital scenario (the subject of future European initiatives) and its enforcement; the review of the European directive on satellite radio broadcasting and cable retransmission, discussions and proposals regarding the responsibilities of operators/ISPs, particularly those relating to actions taken by hosting providers to combat illegal activities online, the reform of the European directive on audiovisual media services. With regard to child protection, Telecom Italia is involved in a particularly significant initiative at EU level aimed at improving the safety of children using the Internet: ICT Coalition for Children Online, a discussion group of European ICT industries that organises half-yearly debates with European institutions and the relevant stakeholders (e.g. NGOs). The activities of the “Better Internet for Kids” platform (a discussion group launched by Commissioner Kroes in 2011) in which the Group is involved, will be relaunched in the coming months at the behest of the current DGConnect DG. Furthermore, Telecom Italia is monitoring the development of several trade agreements which Europe is negotiating with other geographical entities (e.g. TTIP, TiSA, etc.).
As regards relations with the UN, the activities carried out as part of the Global Compact (GC) are of particular importance, taking the form of participation in the working group on Human Rights organised by the GC Network Germany and in the various activities of the Italian network. Telecom Italia and Tim Brasil, the two Group companies which have joined the Global Compact, draw up an annual “Communication on Progress”, which reports on progress achieved by the companies in promoting and applying the 10 core principles of the Global Compact. The CoP drawn up by Telecom Italia in the summer of 2015, relating to the whole of 2014, grants it “Active” status and the “Advanced” level (compliance with the twenty-one criteria required). For further information see the Human Rights paragraph and the telecomitalia.com website.
Telecom Italia is actively involved as a sector member in the ITU (UN agency for international telecommunications), in the three sectors into which it is divided (ITU Radiocommunication Sector, ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector, ITU Telecommunication Development Sector). It is a member of the ITU Child Online Protection (COP), the ITU child protection platform. The Company also regularly participates in the events of the ITU.
Telecom Italia actively monitors the work of the OECD through BIAC (an association which brings together a range of companies from OECD member states) and the permanent representative of Italy to the OECD and the work of the competent Committees on matters of relevance to the Company, including the CDEP (Committee on Digital Economy Policy) and the respective working groups, such as the Working Party (WP) on Communication Infrastructure and Services, the WP for Security and Privacy, the Competitiveness Committee, the Consumer Policy Committee, and the Governance and Anti-Corruption Committee. The issues dealt with during 2015 related to discussions and preparatory work for the OECD Ministerial meeting set for May 2016 in Cancun (Mexico), the review of OECD recommendations regarding electronic commerce, the review of OECD recommendations on International Mobile Roaming, the recommendation on digital security and risk management, digital convergence, as well as the issue of bilateral investment agreements and, in particular, the issue of the investment and investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) protection clauses.
Telecom Italia interfaces with institutions, particularly supranational ones, both individually and as a member of a number of important associations operating on the European and international scene, such as ETNO, GSMA, Business Europe, TABC.
Relations with institutions in Brazil
TIM Brasil has established excellent relations with all the government and parliamentary institutions and regulatory authorities. The frequent and constructive dialogue is based on objective proposals and positions, the purpose of which often goes beyond the interests of the company and involves the entire industry.
At the federal level, relations with the Government are primarily with the Ministry of Communications and also with the relevant departments of the Prime Minister’s Office and the ministries that deal with economic development, justice, education, research and local authorities. TIM has also developed a close dialogue with members of the parliamentary committees which are relevant, but not exclusively, to issues of an economic/financial nature, privacy, telecommunications and consumer protection.
Locally, TIM Brasil is in constant contact with institutions and local authorities on issues relating to telecommunications and, in particular, on the development of infrastructure and network coverage, as well as on issues of specific interest to the local communities.
In everyday practice, the engagement activities with the institutions lead to proposals being formulated, debate being stimulated, active participation in public hearings and meetings on specific topics with stakeholders involved.
The main trade associations to which TIM Brasil belongs are:
- ABR Telecom (Brazilian association of telecommunication resources), for the centralised and shared management of telecommunication solutions;
- TelComp (Brazilian association for competitiveness in telecommunication), which represents the interests of 60 operators for competitiveness in the sector;
- SINDITELEBRASIL (national union of telecommunication operators), which works to coordinate, defend and legally represent its member companies, which includes all the fixed and mobile telephone operators;
- GSMA which represents the interests of mobile operators throughout the world. GSMA Latin America is a key partner in discussing the issues affecting the industry, ranging from the management and allocation of the frequencies to consumer protection and activities that can have a positive impact on the reputation of the industry (the Company participates in the We Care initiative);
- ASIET (association of Latin American research centres and telecommunication companies), which, by focusing on studies and research, aims to find a point of convergence between the various challenges in the world of telecommunication in Latin America through dialogue between the public and the private sectors.
In addition, the activities of TIM Brasil, both regionally and locally, are supported by the activities of the Instituto TIM, which aims to achieve social progress in Brazil through activities and projects that maximize the potential of the mobile network.
Since 2013, the Instituto TIM has implemented projects in over 350 local organisation in 24 states.
1 Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communication.
2 Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.
3 The United Nations Organisation.
4 United Nations Environment Programme.
5 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
6 International Telecommunication Union.