Neelie Kroes, European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Agenda, has asked twenty one EU countries to urgently introduce all the necessary legal measures to allow the pan-EU deployment of mobile satellite services. Potential uses for these services include high-speed internet, mobile television and emergency communications.
The European Parliament and the EU’s Council of Ministers agreed around three years ago that Mobile Satellite Services should be deployed in all EU Member States by May 2011. In May 2009, Inmarsat Ventures and Solaris Mobile were selected to provide these pan-European mobile satellite services. However, 21 EU Member States haven’t yet adopted all the rules needed to facilitate their deployment.
Each member state will license the satellite operator according to national law but in line with a ‘European template’.
Neelie Kroes said “Member States should urgently take all measures necessary to allow the introduction of mobile satellite services throughout the EU. Mobile satellite services have an important role to play in providing innovative services to businesses and citizens across Europe, including in rural or remote areas, and in meeting our Digital Agenda targets of making broadband available to everyone in Europe.”
The UK is named as one of the 21 countries; the EC says the main statutory instrument is in place but three other statutory instruments required for ground-based relay stations and fees are still pending.