The Latvian presidency reached a provisional deal on the last day before the end of its term, according to which mobile phone roaming fees in the European Union will be abolished and open internet access will be safeguarded as of 15 June 2017.
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According to Lithuanian MEP Antanas Guoga, this decision will ensure that Lithuanian citizens will be able to call, send text messages and use cellular data from any of the EU Member States to Lithuania for the same charge as within Lithuania. This decision is also extremely important to mobile application developers and digital market businesses.

"The end of data roaming charges for phone calls is a perfect example that the decisions made by the European Parliament are much more down to earth than one could think. After a few years Lithuanians will be able to contact their families while on vacation in Bulgaria or Cyprus for cheaper. In practice, this means a large amount of citizens' money saved and an easier way of communication while abroad. Moreover, this decision will open the market for various app creators and sellers. And Lithuanians rock at this!" says Guoga.

According to him, this decision will encourage service sellers to compete on complementary services, rather than the on the mere fact of network possession, and this will benefit the consumers mostly.

For the Council, this agreement still has to be approved by the Member States. "I hope that the Lithuanian government will represent the interests of its citizens fairly and that it will resist the pressure of telecommunication lobbyists when voting on this decision," Guoga anticipates.

Under the agreement, roaming surcharges in the European Union will be abolished as of 15 June 2017.

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