The Independent Regulators Group (IRG)
The Independent Regulators Group (IRG) is a forum for exchanging experiences and opinions for the national independent regulatory authorities for telecommunications from the EU and from acceding countries (such as North Macedonia and Turkey), the United Kingdom, and the EFTA members Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. Through exchanging information, contacting experts and issuing common responses, they support each other in the liberalisation of the national telecommunications markets and work towards standardisation of market conditions through consistent application of the European regulatory framework for Electronic Communication Networks in the individual states. Voluntary coordination has the advantage that the members more readily associate with a common position reached through a consensus, rather than prescribed harmonisation.
Regular meetings take place quarterly on the highest management level. In addition, project teams and electronic contact groups consisting of experts are formed for individual issues such as calculating costs, International Roaming, mobile termination rates, fixed line termination rates, Next Generation Networks, or the European Electronic Communications Code including Articles 32 and 33, which specify the notification mechanism regarding certain regulatory measures such as market definitions, market analyses and subsequent regulatory orders.
In response to the increased requirements placed upon the organisation on a European level, the IRG has established a permanent office in Brussels. In order for it to be able to function independently and more effectively as an autonomous organisation, statutes were signed at the IRG plenary on 6/7 December 2007 in Rome by the regulatory authorities present, including the Bundesnetzagentur, establishing the IRG as a non-profit association under Belgian law with its headquarters in Brussels.
Chairmanship of the IRG changes on an annual basis. In 2021, the IRG is chaired by Michel Van Bellinghen of the Belgian Regulatory Agency BIPT, who also has chairmanship of the BEREC Management Board and Board of Regulators.
Publications such as work programmes, common positions and reports can be found on the IRG website.