The Belgian legislator adopted a new law concerning 5G and security measures.
On 17 February 2022, the Belgian legislator adopted a law amending various provisions on electronic communications in order to introduce additional security measures for the provision of 5G mobile services (Belgian Gazette, 11 March 2022). The two main changes are contained in the law of 13 June 2005 on electronic communications:
- The law includes two new definitions :
- An “MNO” (that refers to the English acronym, for “Mobile Network Operator”) is an operator providing mobile electronic communications services and having its own network and all the elements necessary to operate it.
- An “MVNO” (which refers to the English acronym “Mobile Virtual Network Operator”) is an operator providing the same services without being an “MNO”, i.e. without having its own network.
- Before using any part of their 5G network, MNOs have to obtain a joint authorisation from the First Minister, the Minister of telecommunications, the Minister of Defence, the Minister of Justice, the Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Foreign Affairs. This obligation (for which it exists several exceptions) may be extended to MVNOs by Royal Decree, deliberated in the Council of Ministers. The regime of this specific obligation is set out in Article 105 of the law on electronic communications.
By Edouard Cruysmans and Erik Valgaeren