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31 August 2008
World Bank recommendations to the Draft Palestinian Telecommunications Regulatory Commission Law (Commentary)
Draft 2008 Law on the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission
Title: There may be the need to consider a broader title. In addition to the institutional aspects related to the creation of the Authority, the draft deals with other substantive issues.
Presentation/ Format: The draft would benefit from a better organization of different sections and from introduction of titles for each article. A table of content should be added once the law is finalized to facilitate navigation of the document.
A new Article/ section could be added to deal with the objective of the law immediately after the definition sections. This section is important for the flow of the law and would help with interpretation of specific provisions against the objectve of the Act. The current article 3 contains broad principles. They need to be elaborated further and labeled correctly. The establishment of the Authority should be mentioned as one of the main objectives of the new law.
Scope of the Act: Although a number of articles refer to the law as covering both telecommunications and information technology, this is basically a telecommunications law.
The rulemaking power of the Commission needs to be clarified and made more explicit to allow the Commission to undertake its roe without having to go back to Ministry or Cabinet when the need arises for new regulatory instruments.
Appointment of the board of the Commission is by cabinet. There is possibility of appointment by the president or prime minister. In the context of Palestine, could this delay the appointment of the Board and delay the establishment of the regulator? If there was a delay, could there be an interim arrangement? It might be good to have staggered terms for the Commissioners so that they are not all replaced at the same time.
The draft would benefit from having infrastructure sharing provisions along the lines of the interconnection provisions; i.e., that operators should be encouraged to share infrastructure, but that DOs must share infrastructure. An example of such provisions from another jurisdiction is attached as Annex 2.
These comments have been slightly revised to take into account translation inadequacies of the draft. This version is based on the Arabic version
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