Roaming Charges Within the EU to End by June 2017

MEDIA ROOM

As from April 2016, a 14-month interim period for telecommunications companies will start before all roaming charges within the EU will be completely eliminated by June 2017. During this interim period, telecoms companies can still apply surcharges at a reduced cost, not exceeding the following maximum amounts:

  • €0.05 per minute on calls
  • €0.05 per megabtye of date used
  • €0.02 per sms sent

This agreement was reached after years of campaigning for the elimination of all roaming surcharges across the EU and to define the EU members’ approach towards the regulation of internet traffic. Following this agreement, the EU will be advocating the principle of net-neutrality for the first time. The United States already have regulations surrounding net neutrality in effect.

Net-neutrality requires internet service providers to stop favouring some internet traffic, however, according to European net-neutrality rules, some exceptions to the rule of treating internet traffic equally may still apply. Services requiring high-quality internet connection such as internet TVs can still be favoured by ISPs, as long as the overall quality of the internet connection is not negatively affected.

Furthermore, the commission stated that in instances related to public interest such as the circulation of sexually abusive images of children and organised terrorist attacks, it would be able to control internet traffic in order to deter such events.