An operator is “a person or an undertaking providing a public electronic communications network or a publicly available electronic communications service” (Article 2, 11°, of the Telecom Act).
Before carrying out an operator activity on the Belgian market, submitting a notification to the BIPT is mandatory. However, this obligation is not applicable to the operators providing number-independent interpersonal communications services. You will find here information on how to submit a notification and the related costs.
Depending on the type of activity you wish to launch, other fees and contributions may apply.
In the field of telecommunications, the BIPT has quite a lot of missions to fulfil. It tries to increase competition by regulating certain markets through market analyses decisions in the field of broadband, broadcasting and mobile or fixed telephony. All market regulation decisions regarding telecom can be consulted here.
Should you not be able to come to an agreement during negotiations with another operator, the BIPT may intervene. More information on the role and the powers of the BIPT can be found here.
The BIPT also defends the consumers’ interests and increases transparency on the market by means of a number of practical tools. In principle, the BIPT does not deal with individual complaints from end-users. That falls within the brief of the Office of the Ombudsman for Telecommunications.
The BIPT follows the developments on the telecoms market from up close and annually publishes a report containing relevant statistics that may serve to draft your business plan.
Should you have any questions regarding certain general-economic parameters or economic legislation, you can contact the FPS Economy here or you can find more statistical data through the Belgian statistical office.
This list of rights & obligations gives a (non-exhaustive) survey of a number of legal obligations the operators have to fulfil in the field of consumer protection, network security, emergency services, universal services, etc.
If you want to offer services over fibre or if you want to roll out your own fibre, we recommend you to visit fibreinfo, the BIPT website that provides all kinds of useful information (such as your rights and obligations) about fibre roll-out and the fibre offer in Belgium.
If you do not find an answer to your question, you can always contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you wish to be active as an operator in other (EU) countries as well, we recommend that you contact the regulator of the country in question for more information. Here you will find a list of these bodies.