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June 10, 2019
The Regulations implement into UK legislation the requirements of Article 50 of the BEREC Regulation (2018/1971/EU), which amends the Open Internet Access Regulation (2015/2120/EU).
Article 50 of the BEREC Regulation introduced caps on retail charges for regulated intra-EU communications by inserting Article 5a, which became effective on 15 May 2019, into the Open Internet Access Regulation.
Article 5(a)(6) of the BEREC Regulation requires Member States to lay down rules on penalties applicable to infringements of Article 5a by putting in place a penalty regime that is effective, proportionate and dissuasive.
The new Regulations provide Ofcom with powers to enforce and render effective Article 5a. The key provisions are:
- the designation of Ofcom as the national regulatory authority;
- procedure for notification of breaches of Article 5a or the new Regulation;
- the penalties for breaches of Article 5a or the new Regulation;
- calculation of company turnover to calculate the level of penalties; and
- appeal procedures: appeals against Ofcom decisions go to the Competition Appeal Tribunal and then to the Court of Appeal and the Court of Session in Scotland.
The new Regulations come into force on 30 June 2019 and cease to have effect immediately before the end of 14 May 2024. To access the new Regulations, click here.