EU Ministers for Transport, Infrastructure, and Communications meet on 4 and 5 December 2017 in Brussels to agree their position on an updated mandate for the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communication (BEREC). Ministers also look at the progress made on a proposal on ePrivacy and discuss draft rules on the free flow of non-personal data. On Tuesday, the Council takes stock of the progress made on the mobility package proposals relating to market access and social aspects and discusses the road charging proposals. Ministers look at the progress made on the proposal to safeguard competition in air transport. The Council is also due to adopt three sets of conclusions.
The Council adopted conclusions on the report by the Commission containing a mid-term evaluation of Galileo, EGNOS and the performance of the European GNSS Agency. The conclusions underline the strategic importance of Europe’s satellite navigation systems and set out a number of recommendations on their implementation and evolution.
The council of the European Union,
- Recalls the Union’s commitment to reaching and providing Galileo full operational capability by the year 2020
- Highlights the importance of Galileo and EGNOS for ensuring Europe’s strategic autonomy in the field of satellite navigation while fostering a globally competitive European space sector and opening up business opportunities for European downstream industry; CALLS ON the Commission to promote non-dependence regarding key technologies for the Galileo space and ground infrastructure;
- Reiterates that the continuity of the infrastructure and the sustainability of services will form a critical basis for the long-term success of Galileo and EGNOS; STRESSES the need to secure adequate resources to fully exploit their potential and to create a positive and predictable investment climate in the downstream sector, without prejudice to the next MFF;
- Encourages the GSA, in close cooperation with the Commission, to accelerate the promotion and marketing of the Galileo and EGNOS services by maximising opportunities for downstream commercial exploitation and by ensuring better integration with other services including, but not limited to financial services, intelligent transport systems and conventional navigation systems;
- Reiterates that it is of utmost importance for all Member State territories located in Europe to benefit from the full coverage of EGNOS services and, in this context, URGES the Commission to reach the full coverage of EGNOS services in all Member States’ territories as soon as possible but no later than 2025; UNDERLINES the necessity of the EGNOS Safety of Life service to fulfil the ICAO requirements; CALLS for the allocation of appropriate financial resources to that effect;
- Underlines the challenges involved in the operational phase of the programmes and the necessity to adopt gradual changes in governance structures in order to provide for an efficient programme management while facilitating more rapid and transparent decision making processes; CALLS FOR streamlining the roles and responsibilities of relevant actors;
- Calls for adequate evolution of the programmes, taking into account the new challenges ahead, including those relating to security whilst prioritising the stability and reliability of the system;
- Emphasizes the need to report regularly on the implementation of the programmes and to revise their orientations, in agreement with Member States, when appropriate, in order to adapt to the fast changing environment and evolving user needs
For in-depth details, refer to the “Council conclusions on The Mid-term Evaluation of the Galileo and EGNOS programmes and of the performance of the European GNSS Agency” document, available for download below.