The EU's net neutrality regulation and the guidelines to regulators issued by Berec are working well, according to an evaluation by Berec, the assembly of national telecom regulators in the EU, according Telecompaper. However, the regulators agreed that more clarification is needed in certain areas, such as zero rating, and updated guidance will be issued in 2019. 
The opinion from Berec was prepared as advice to the European Commission for its review of the net neutrality regulation, which is due by April 2019. Berec said it found from market input that the net neutrality rules have struck a good balance; while some parties such as ISPs may want more relaxed rules, consumer groups have called for stricter regulation. 
Nevertheless, Berec found after two years of applying the regulation and its guidelines that clarification is needed in certain areas. This will be done in 2019, with a consultation for stakeholders on a draft version of updated guidelines. The just published opinion outlines the main points eligible for clarification, but should not be considered exhaustive, Berec said. 
Zero-rating will be one of the many areas for update, after several national regulators conducted enforcement actions, some of which are still going through court appeals. Berec said it plans to develop step-by-step guidelines for regulators examining zero-rating cases. Guidance on commercial practices is otherwise not expected to see any substantive changes, with only some clarifications to help national regulators apply the rules consistently.
No 5G guidance
Berec appears to have ruled out issuing any specific guidance for applying net neutrality rules to 5G networks. The regulator said its analysis points to "considerable room" in the regulation for the implementation of 5G technologies, such as network slicing, 5QI and mobile edge computing, and it has not been presented with any concrete examples by stakeholders where the implementation of 5G technology would be impeded by the net neutrality regulation. If there remain concerns in the industry, companies are invited to start an informal dialogue with national regulators to help overcome any uncertainties, and as with any technology, each matter will be assessed on a case-by-case basis, Berec said. 
In 2019, Berec will continue its regulatory assessment of 5G in a report due in Q4. This may include further developing regulatory assessment of 5G technologies in relation to net neutrality beyond the latest opinion, it said.