Regulatory Issues

Regulatory Issues

OTE aspires towards fostering long-term value, repaying its customers for the trust they place in the company and maintaining its high standard of business practices, so that it is in a position to respond to any regulatory matters that may arise. OTE abides by the law and fulfils its legal requirements, while concurrently actively monitoring and participating in both national and European developments and practices being shaped in the framework of public policy deliberations.

The Greek electronic communications sector is regulated in accordance with the European Regulatory Framework, as the latter has been incorporated into national legislation, which consists of Laws, Presidential Decrees, Ministerial Decisions and the Decisions of independent administrative authorities, which receive legislative codification.

The regulatory framework affects the operation and relations of OTE with consumers, the decisions adopted in relation to planned investments in infrastructure, the technologies and services. For that reason, OTE:

  • Collaborates with the Regulatory Authority and the State in order to formulate a policy that will encourage investments, especially investments in next-generation access network infrastructure, and that will boost healthy competition.
  • Supports its positions during discussions on the incorporation of the new European regulatory framework into national legislation, as well as on the framework of competition law.
  • Strives for unbiased treatment by the regulatory authorities, with the aim of achieving the lifting of regulatory requirements placed on departments, provided that the competition is grown adequately.
  • Supports its positions before national and European regulatory authorities, bodies and judicial authorities on issues pertaining to competition law.
  • Ensures it effectively conforms to regulatory requirements, always bearing the company's best interests in mind.
  • Complies with regulatory requirements and participates in shaping the national and European regulatory framework, through the positions it adopts at national and European discussions on regulatory matters.

Specifically, in the strategic context of ensuring a regulatory framework that will serve as a long-term instrument of economic development, safeguarding the interests of the company and OTE customers and contributing towards social prosperity, OTE collaborates with:

  • The Hellenic Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT);
  • The Hellenic Authority for Communication Security and Privacy (ADAE);
  • The Hellenic Data Protection Authority (APPD);
  • The Hellenic Competition Commission;
  • The Greek National Council for Radio and Television (ESR);
  • The [Greek] Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks;
  • The [Greek] Ministry of Development;
  • The [Greek] Ministry of the Environment, Energy and Climate Change;
  • Other Ministries, as the case may be, for ensuring a proper regulatory framework.

Participation in European and International Policy Forums

OTE, in its capacity as member, makes an active contribution in European, as well as international Organisations, such as:

  • ETNO (European Telecommunications Network Operators’ Association), where it has one elected Chairperson in the Internet Governance Working Group;
  • ITU (International Telecommunications Union);
  • The Internet Governance Forum, as well as other forums or organisations promoting issues such as consumer protection, communications security and developing synergies among various partners operating in the field of electronic communications, with the aim of creating a reliable regulatory framework for the electronic communications sector.

In addition, OTE also participates in:

  • The Working Group on issues concerning the impact of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) on climate change, under the auspices of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks;
  • The Special Implementation Working Group for the Mobile Communications Systems Quality Regulation, under the auspices of EETT.

In 2010, OTE participated in 19 consultations, including:

  • Public deliberations meeting of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks, on the subject ‘Special licensing procedure governing the installation of Standardised Antenna Constructions’
  • Public deliberations meeting of EETT on submitting a recommendation to the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Networks and to every co-competent Minister, on the subject of the issue of a decision for the amendment of Joint Ministerial Decision with ref. no. 44876/1637 of the Ministers of Finance & Economy, Health & Social Solidarity and Transport & Communications, titled 'Adoption of measures targeting end-users who are Persons with Disabilities' (Hellenic Government Gazette 1667/B/2008)
  • Public deliberations meeting of EETT regarding the Methodological principles and parameters of the Model Economic Area, regarding Local Loop Unbundling (LLU) and Wholesale Broadband Access (WBA)
  • Public deliberations meeting of EETT regarding the amendment to EETT Decision with ref. no. 451/010/2007 titled 'Approval of the Code of Ethics governing the Provision of Multimedia Information Services'
  • Public deliberations meeting of the Ministry of Economy, Competitiveness and Shipping on the guiding principles and priorities in the design of the 'Digital Convergence' O.P. (Operational Programme)

In 2010 OTE did not participate in any international meetings.

Regulatory Litigations

Regarding the total number of litigations concerning the breach of competition law, the enforcement of anti-trust legislation and the prohibition of monopolistic behaviour, during 2010 we filed one (1) appeal before the Administrative Court of Appeals of Athens. In total, OTE was subjected to the following in 2010:

  • 29 fines, of which twenty five (25) concern the construction of antennas, one (1) concernd an infringement pertaining to Incumbent Provider obligations and one (1) was imposed for a breach of the provisions of telecommunications legislation in regard to the offer of certain flat-rate plans.
  • 8 non-pecuniary penalties, of which: 6 concern flat-rate plans and 2 concern collocation issues.
  • 2 fines have been imposed by ADAE.
  • The total value of imposed fines stands at EUR1.208,674

OTE has filed appeals before the competent Courts of Law, seeking the annulment of the EETT decisions. In brief:

Year Cases in litigation Fines Non-pecuniary penalties Value of fines
2009 20 14 7 13 million €
2010 1 29 8 1.208.674 €

In 2010 the regulatory authority EETT called for a consultation requesting the participation of the Ministry for Infrastructure, Transport and Networks and every other co-competent Ministry, concerning the subject of further expansion of OTE’s towards People with Special Needs. OTE participated in the consultation, the results of which have not yet been announced