Politics

WCIT Plenary "vote" on Internet resolution

>> CHAIR: ...
We go now to the primary draft resolution to foster an enabling environment for the greater growth of the Internet. This resolution has been also part of the long discussion and the -- with the Regional groups and this was part of the compromise text that was put forward to you but the meeting was carefully written. It was -- we have taken it in the group, line-by-line, as a matter of fact as a matter of fact, Secretary-General read it line-by-line to the group, and it's put before you for consideration.
I'll proceed with the title. I see no objection. Recognizing A. I see no objection. Recognizing B. Thank you.
Recognizing C. Thank you.
Recognizing D.
Egypt?
>> EGYPT: Yes, we would like to suggest another text for D that reads the following: "Recognizing that the existing arrangements for Internet Governance have worked effectively to make the Internet the highly robust, dynamic and geographically diverse medium it is today, with the private sector taking the lead in day-to-day operation and with innovation and value creation at the edges."
This is paragraph 55 from the Tunis agenda. .
>> CHAIR: Bulgaria?

[Revised] Draft International Telecommunication Regulations

Summary: 

This is the first revision of this document. Changes include:

* A new article 3.9
* A new article 6.X
* Some minor editorial changes

INTERNATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATION REGULATIONS

PREAMBLE

While the sovereign right of each State to regulate its telecommunications is fully recognized, the provisions of the present International Telecommunication Regulations (hereafter referred to as “Regulations”) complement the Constitution and Convention of the International Telecommunication Union, with a view to attaining the purposes of the International Telecommunication Union in promoting the development of telecommunication services and their most efficient operation while harmonizing the development of facilities for world-wide telecommunications.

[While implementing these Regulations Member States shall take into account their international obligations in relation to universal human rights].

Article 1

Purpose and Scope of the Regulations

1.1 a) These Regulations establish general principles which relate to the provision and operation of international telecommunication services offered to the public as well as to the underlying international telecommunication transport means used to provide such services.

Compilation of proposals discussed in Committee 5

The document is a compilation of the draft text that have been discussed and consolidated through the work of the various Ad Hoc Groups, Working Group 1 and 2 and Committee 5.

Article 3

International Network

28 3.1 Members shall endeavour to ensure that [administrations] cooperate in the establishment, operation and maintenance of the international network to provide a satisfactory quality of service.

29 3.2 [Administrations] [Member States] shall endeavour to ensure the provision of sufficient telecommunication facilities to meet the demand for international telecommunication services.

30 3.3 [Operating Agencies] shall determine by mutual agreement which international routes are to be used. [Member States may seek information on the international route of their traffic, where [technically, financially and legally] feasible. Member States shall cooperate - consistent with their national laws [and respective international obligations] - to provide this information to the Member State concerned].

Draft International Telecommunication Regulations

[

INTERNATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATION
REGULATIONS

PREAMBLE

1 While the sovereign right of each State to regulate its telecommunications is fully recognized, the provisions of the present International Telecommunication Regulations (hereafter referred to as “Regulations”) complement the Constitutiona and Convention of the International Telecommunication Union, with a view to attaining the purposes of the International Telecommunication Union in promoting the development of telecommunication services and their most efficient operation while harmonizing the development of facilities for world-wide telecommunications. [While implementing these Regulations Member States shall take into account their international obligations in relation to universal human rights].

Article 1

Purpose and Scope of the Regulations

1.1 a) These Regulations establish general principles which relate to the provision and operation of international telecommunication services offered to the public as well as to the underlying international telecommunication transport means used to provide such services.

Provisions under Article 6

Summary: 

This is the second revision of this document.

Article 6

Charging and Accounting

SUP COM5-AHG/45/1

42

SUP COM5-AHG/45/2

43

SUP COM5-AHG/45/3

44

SUP COM5-AHG/45/4

45

SUP COM5-AHG/45/5

46

SUP COM5-AHG/45/6

47

SUP COM5-AHG/45/7

48

SUP COM5-AHG/45/8

49

SUP COM5-AHG/45/9

50

SUP COM5-AHG/45/10

51

SUP COM5-AHG/45/11

52

SUP COM5-AHG/45/12

53

SUP COM5-AHG/45/13

54

Reasons: Provisions 42 to 54 of Article 6 are proposed for deletion and replacement by the following provisions.

ADD COM5-AHG/45/14

42A International Telecommunication Arrangements

ADD COM5-AHG/45/15

Report of the Chairman of Committee 5

Review

1. Committee 5 was created by the Plenary with the Terms of Reference shown in Document 34 and allocation of documents listed in Document DT/18. The following management team was appointed:

· Mr Joshua K. PEPRAH (Ghana), Chairman;

· Mr Al-Mashakbeh ALANSARI (Jordan), Vice-Chairman;

· Mr Bob HORTON (Australia), Vice-Chairman;

· Mr Luis F. LUCATERO (Mexico), Vice-Chairman;

· Mr Albert B. NALBANDIAN (Armenia), Vice-Chairman;

· Mr Frédéric RIEHL (Switzerland), Vice-Chairman;

· Mr Richard HILL and Mr Alexander NTOKO, Secretaries.

2. Two Working Groups were created under Committee 5, as shown in Document 34. The majority of proposals were first discussed in the two working groups, before being referred back to Committee 5.

Use of the terms recognized operating agencies/operating agencies and basic definitions

Summary: 

This is a revised version of a suggested compromise over use of the term "operating agencies". The original was met with significant opposition so this version offers three additional options.

Broadly, the conference is split over who exactly is impacted by the ITRs themselves. "Recognized operating agencies" are a much small subset of companies - mostly traditional telecoms companies. They are the ones currently impacted by the ITRs. Some countries want this changed to just "operating agencies" which some fear would then incorporate a huge number of other companies, especially Internet companies like Google or Facebook.

The four options in this document - including one that would simply remove the term altogether - are an effort to reach a compromise between the two sides.

Implications: 

This issue is at the heart of a much broader fight over how far an update to the ITRs should stretch into modern communications.

It is undeniable that much, if not most, communication in 2012 happens in a way that was not envisaged in the original ITRs. Some countries want the ITRs updated to incorporate all of this communication that is carried over data networks; other countries feel that the ITRs are the wrong tool, even if updated, to reflect the modern communications environment.

As such the issue of who exactly the ITRs are said to impact is fundamental and could have significant global implications depending on who exactly they are seen to encompass.

1. As agreed in the opening plenary, the Chairman of the conference would conduct informal discussions regarding the issue of the use of the terms Operating Agency (OA) and Recognized Operating Agency (ROA). These informal discussions were subsequently extended to include the topic of “basic definitions”, in particular the proposed ADD of 14A (telecommunications/ICTs) and 15A (international telecommunication/ICT service).

I. ROAs/OAs

2. Relevant provisions found in the Constitution are as follows:

WCIT splits over the issue of "operating agencies"

Telecoms conference can't move forward until it's agreed who the regulations will actually apply to


Conference chair Mohamed Nasser Al-Ghanim has put forward a compromise solution - but level of ambiguity means it is unlikely to be agreed to

The World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) has dramatically split and may grind to a halt until a key distinction over whom precisely the resulting international treaty apply to is decided.

At the heart of the issue is the term "operating agencies". Currently the international telecommunication regulations (ITRs) apply only to "recognized operating agencies" - and that means large telecoms operators in each country1.

Some countries want that term changed to just "operating agencies", which would mean the ITRs become applicable to a vastly larger number of groups - in fact, "any individual, company, corporation or governmental agency which operates a telecommunication installation".

Use of the terms recognized operating agencies / operating agencies

Summary: 

The conference is split over who exactly is impacted by the ITRs themselves. "Recognized operating agencies" are a much small subset of companies - mostly traditional telecoms company - are they are the ones currently impacted by the ITRs. Some countries want this changed to just "operating agencies" which would then incorporate a huge number of other companies, especially Internet companies like Google or Facebook.

This document outlines a suggested compromise by the chair of the meeting: one that is unlikely to pass given the current weight of opposition to it.

Implications: 

If adopted, this compromise would greatly expand the impact of the ITRs to all those companies that use data networks, rather than those that simply operate them i.e. Google will become included rather than just, say, British Telecom, Italia Telecom or AT&T.

That would have far-reaching implications for the ITRs, ITU and overall Internet economy.

1. As agreed in the opening plenary, the Chairman of the conference would conduct informal discussions regarding the issue of the use of the terms Operating Agency (OA) and Recognized Operating Agency (ROA). These informal discussions were subsequently extended to include the topic of “basic definitions”, in particular the proposed ADD of 14A (telecommunications/ICTs) and 15A (international telecommunication/ICT service).

I. ROAs/OAs

2. Relevant provisions found in the Constitution are as follows:

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