The OECD has held three workshops on Internet issues in Dublin (1996), Osaka (1998) and Venice (1999). At each of these workshops Internet traffic exchange has been the focus of one of the sessions. In 2001 a workshop is being held in Berlin with Internet traffic exchange and communications development as the leading issue. As for past workshops the number of participants would be limited to under 100 and aim to bring together a mix of policy makers, industry and academics to discuss issues in a more informal environment. The workshop would be held over two days 7-8 June 2001.
Please find attached the draft agenda for the workshop, the registration form, a letter of invitation from the German Ministry of Economics and Technology and other information on the workshop.
Ulrich Mohr, Head of Section, International Policy on Telecommunications and Posts, BMWI, Germany
In times past maps of global networks showed cables terminating at national and coastal borders. Following liberalisation, in a growing number of countries, these networks are now borderless. For example NTT, Telia, Teleglobe and France Telecom have either built or acquired their own networks in the United States. At the same time carriers, headquartered in the United States, have raced to build pan European networks following widespread liberalisation in January 1998. In other cases carriers have formed alliances or joint ventures with each partner taking the lead in a specific region (e.g. AT&T-BT, KPN-Qwest, Telstra-Pacific Century Cyberworks).
How is Internet traffic exchanged? What financial mechanisms are in place for the exchange of Internet traffic and how are they encouraging Internet development? How will the evolving end-to-end networks and services impact on how these arrangements will evolve? Will all traffic exchange simply become a question of local origination and termination? In the case of state-owned carriers does this structure provide them with the flexibility to adapt to a new environment? What are the trends in content location and how do these factors influence Internet traffic patterns and financial arrangements?
Chair: DietmarPlesse, BMWI, Germany and Vice Chair OECD Working Party on Telecommunications and Information Services Policy.
Communications capacity or minutes are increasingly traded just like any other commodity. How do these developments relate to Internet traffic exchange? On which routes is capacity available for trading and where is "tradable" capacity scarce. What are the trends in the deployment and availability of undersea cables for global connectivity.
Geoff Huston,* Chief Scientist, Telstra Internet (*Presented by Mirjam Kühne, RIPE)
What policy and regulatory reforms are required to stimulate Internet development and address the international digital divide? What regulatory barriers exist to the development of the Internet including infrastructures such as international connectivity, domestic teledensity and Internet exchange points. How can countries maximise the benefits to their economies of Internet development including lower costs for infrastructure service. While the purpose of the international telecommunication settlements system was to meet the costs of termination, not as a source of development funds, telecommunication carriers in some developing countries have argued they need this revenue as a source for development funds. What is going to replace the international settlements system in the new environment? How are countries adapting to the changes in settlement rates in terms of development.
Chair: KathyFisher, Telecommunications Policy Branch, Industry Canada
New interconnection frameworks are being put into place in an increasing number of countries to enable ISPs to offer new pricing structures for users. What are the main principles of the new interconnection frameworks? How much progress has been made in OECD countries in developing interconnection frameworks appropriate to the exchange of Internet traffic at the local level?
Chair: WolfgangJauk, Legal and Policy Advisor, Ministry of Transport, Department of Telecommunications; Austria
ENUM is the Internet Engineering Task Force protocol that will assist in the convergence of the PSTN and the IP network; it is the mapping of a telephone number from the PTSN to Internet services -- telephone number in, URL out. ENUM was developed as a solution to the question of how to find services on the Internet using only a telephone number and telephone keypads. As Internet access grows, by devices other than PCs, ENUM is expected to be one of the key technologies facilitating communications between switched and IP based networks. What public policy issues may be involved with the development of this service?
Chair: KarenRose, NTIA, United States
Jim Casey, Director of Public Policy and Business Development, Neustar
The future of communication traffic exchange and concluding remarks.
Is there a role for regulators? What are some of the directions Internet traffic exchange will take with next generation Internet architecture and what are the policy implications? How do users view current developments in Internet traffic exchange? How does the financial community view the current state of play? Participants are invited to raise and discuss issues in this extended session.
Chair: MichaelTiger, Industry Canada and Chair OECD Working Party on Telecommunications and Information Services Policy.