2021 work programme of the National Media and Infocommunications Authority

Published: 25 February 2021

1. Introduction

In compliance with its statutory obligation, the National Media and Infocommunications Authority (hereinafter "the Authority", or NMHH) publishes on its website, by the end of February each year, its annual work programme, which shall include the prominent tasks of the year.

Before presenting our 2021 tasks, we would like to briefly present the achievements we have accomplished in 2020.

2020 was a special year for many organizations, including the Authority. A new type of operating model had to be developed almost on the spot, a model that could be applied to the conditions required by the emergency. In order to do this we needed to establish the IT, operational and cooperation framework over a very short time period.  Our organization has adapted quickly and flexibly to the challenges, which is most evidenced by the fact that we were able to fulfil our planned priority tasks just as in previous years.

In the field of promoting competition, the analysis of the wholesale market for national analogue terrestrial radio broadcasting was completed in the first half of the year. Furthermore, we continued the development of the Hír-Közmű system, completing the AutoCad system plan and the Hír-Közmű 1.0 framework system plan.

It is worth noting that at the time of the epidemiological emergency, on March 26, 2020, the on-site auction of 5G-related frequencies took place, where all the frequency bands offered in the 700 MHz, 2100 MHz, 3600 MHz band range were sold out. Based on the feedback from the participating service providers, the Authority implemented a well-organized auction procedure with good methodology and sound documentation.

Careful planning, predictable regulatory behaviour and regulatory environment are essential for the efficient use of radio spectrum, for which purpose – consulting several times with market players and taking into account the experiences of the previous strategic period – the Authority has developed the national radio spectrum strategy for the next five years, i.e. for the 2021-2025 period.

In connection with the modernization of media administration, we contributed to the implementation of European regulations on video sharing platforms, and we conducted a demand-side research on content consumption habits.

Enforcing the interests of subscribers and users also played a decisive role in 2020. Our customer service offices have been altered to become physically accessible and the Authority's external website has also been made accessible. The Children on the Internet website was completed within the framework of the Authority's parental education program, and in the autumn we also ran two public education campaigns: both drew attention to the fake news and the dangers of its spreading online.

In the autumn of 2020, we opened our third Media Literacy Training Center in Sopron, which welcomes schools from the surrounding counties, thus relieving the burden on the Budapest site. As a novelty, special sessions developed for the web have appeared.

In the frame of the development of efficiency of our internal operations, construction work began on our Visegrádi Street premises. Parallel to the government's efforts, the foundations of our data asset management have also been laid out.

In line with previous practice, our 2021 work programme includes those priority tasks that, on one hand, go beyond our daily general activities and, on the other hand, contribute to the realization of the strategic goals of the Authority.

Accordingly, the structure of the work programme is built around the following strategic objectives:

  • sustainable competition, stimulation of innovation and investment;
  • modernization of media management;
  • promoting the interests of subscribers and users;
  • promoting operational excellence.

2. Sustainable competition, stimulation of innovation and investment

Fostering and reviewing sustainable competition in the electronic communications market is a priority goal of the Authority.

In 2021, we plan to examine the domestic mobile price levels, during which we estimate the change in the price level of the Hungarian mobile services taking into account service quality factors (e.g. package characteristics, speed, latency, consumer satisfaction), and through this we assess the increase in consumer welfare due to technological and market development, new spectrum use and competition in the market.

In 2021 we will conduct a number of market reviews ("Voice call termination on individual mobile networks", " Local wholesale access provided at fixed location ", " Wholesale central access provided at a fixed location for mass-market products”).

In the Hír-Közmű Project, our goal this year is to launch the Hír-Közmű 1.0 framework, put it into operation and publish the ESZTER planning support program. An electronic document management  system will be set up, which will ensure the electronic means of data transfer during building permit procedures, will support market surveillance procedures regarding deployment of electronic communications infrastructure, and will ensure the creation of a geo-spatial database based on the incoming data on electronic communications infrastructure.

Within the framework of continuous monitoring of the progress of the implementation of the broadband coverage targets set by the European Union for 2020 and 2025 in connection with the implementation of the Gigabit Society, it is necessary to regularly assess the bandwidth available and the related geo-spatial and other data at service endpoints. Our task includes the development of the online interface and, if necessary, the preparation of legislative amendments.

In the field of frequency management, we will prepare for the sale of the 32 GHz frequency band in 2021, and support the planning, licensing and control of radio networks by creating a simulation system that will help reassuring the public, support the planning of service providers and supervision conducted by government offices.

3. Modernization of media management

The amendment of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive, which entered into force on 18 December 2018, also introduced changes in commercial communications, including product placement, which were transposed into domestic law by the amendment of the Media Act. effective from 1st of August 2019. The amendment extended the regulation on product placement to on-demand media content in addition to linear media services. In view of this, it is necessary to review and amend the relevant Recommendation of the Media Council.

Our further task is to map the concept, phenomenon and regulatory issues of disinformation, to analyse the emerging regulatory problems, and to explore the elements and process of conceptualization. Assessing the role of online platforms and examining tools used to protect consumers is also part of our work.

4. Promoting the interests of subscribers and users

The Authority directly protects and helps users by its wide range of regulatory tools (universal services, market surveillance), but it also aims to contribute indirectly, by other means, to the enforcement of their interests.

The European Electronic Communications Code contains a number of provisions that provide new guarantees for the protection of subscribers' interests and strengthen existing consumer protection provisions. As a result of the transposition of the provisions of the Code into domestic law in 2019-20, the Electronic Communications Act was amended and new rules of its implementing regulations were established.

The new provisions of the Electronic Communications Act have been in force and applicable from 21 December 2020. New provisions of the NMHH Decree 2/2015. on Detailed Provisions of Subscriber Contracts also entered into force at that time, but their application will take place in several stages. In order for the Code's guarantees to protect subscribers apply from the outset, we plan to raise awareness of the new rules and comprehensively monitor their enforcement.

To support consumers, we aim to develop a comparison tool in 2021 in line with the requirements of the European Electronic Communications Code, independent of electronic communications providers and capable of comparing providers' prices and tariffs and quality of service.

Following the domestic implementation of the European Electronic Communications Code, a number of regulations were adopted in 2020 that will have a major impact on millions of consumers. Our aim is to provide information on the novelties of the regulations, in particular the amendments to the subscription contracts, the rules on the quality of services and the effects of the change in premium rate services on the population.

In 2020 in order to make e-administration work, the Authority, within the framework of a multi-project E-administration Program, started to prepare those developments, which were necessary for the establishment of basic, compliant e-administration within NMHH. In 2021, the project will continue with the selection of suppliers and the implementation of each work task.

With its own tools and resources, the Authority intends to promote the level of residential and business digitalisation, and the spread and use of modern “smart” applications. Our goal is to educate and inform those who currently either use the Internet through an outdated mobile technology (3G) or do not use it at all. In the light of all this, the aim of our communication is to encourage the replacement of devices that are not, or only to a limited extent suitable for mobile internet access, and educate users of 4G-capable devices without a mobile internet subscription, and help develop their digital skills.

5. Promoting operational excellence

As in recent years, in 2021 we will also focus on further developing our institutional operations. This is essential if we are to succeed in the international arena.

The construction works on our premises in Visegrádi Street will continue, during which, among other things, we will establish a new measuring chamber, several smaller measuring laboratories and a secure data and server centre.

The Unified Communications, Media and Motion Picture Statistics Database (EHMMSA) makes data available on fixed and mobile telecommunications services, broadcasting, post, IT, Internet, media, motion picture. In 2021, the concept for the renewal of the database will be completed, after which the development work will begin.

In order to improve our organizational efficiency, we will introduce the common work platform SharePoint in 2021 within the Authority.

6. Overview of the tasks of the 2021 work programme

Stimulating sustainable competition, innovation and investment

Priority Tasks
1. Examining new electronic communications regulatory challenges 1.1 Examination of the domestic mobile prices by a hedonic regression method
2. Dynamic and effective regulations stimulating competition 2.1  Analysis of the wholesale market "Voice call termination on individual mobile networks" (market 2/2014)
2.2 Analysis of the wholesale market " Local wholesale access provided at fixed location" (market 3 (a) / 2014)
2.3 Analysis of the wholesale market "Wholesale central access provided at a fixed location for mass-market products" (Market 3 (b) / 2014)
2.4 Launch of the Hír-Közmű 1.0 framework, publication of the ESZTER planning support program
2.5 Online Mapping I. - Online collection of data related to broadband coverage and bandwidth available at endpoints
2.6 Online Mapping II. - online collection of broadband network node data and data on meeting the Open Access obligations
3. Efficient management of scarce resources (radio spectrum, numbering resources) 3.1 Preparing for the sale of the 32 GHz frequency band for fixed systems
3.2 Consultations on the establishment of a simulation system for the analysis of public radiation exposure due to electronic communications; finalizing the system concept and preparing the system specifications.

Modernization of media management

Priority Tasks
4. Improving the media governance system within the EU regulatory framework 4.1 Review of Media Council Recommendation on product placement 
5. Analysing changes in content consumption habits, their impact on regulation, and identifying justified measures 5.1 Exploring the concept and regulatory issues relating to disinformation

Promoting the interests of subscribers and users

Priority Tasks
6. Enforcing the interests of subscribers and users, especially regarding vulnerable users 6.1 Monitoring the implementation of new consumer protection provisions
7. Analysing changes in content consumption habits, their impact on regulation, and identifying justified measures 7.1 Laying the foundations of the Authority’s e-administration
7.2 Development and implementation of a comparison tool in accordance with the requirements of the Electronic Communications Code
7.3 Educational campaign: ‘Netre fel!’
7.4 Communicating the changes resulting from the new electronic communications regulation to consumers

Promoting operational excellence

Priority Tasks
8. Improving organizational and economic efficiency 8.1 The Authority’s real estate development in Visegrádi street, Budapest
8.2 Preparation of a concept for the renewal of the EHMMSA
8.3 Introduction of SharePoint