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European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)
News article10 July 2023Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations

‘Roaming' for Ukraine: operators extend agreement to provide affordable calls to and from Ukraine for another year


On 9 July, the Commission welcomed the twelve-month prolongation of the operators' agreement allowing displaced refugees from Ukraine to stay connected across borders. The Commission has facilitated the agreement between 22 European and seven Ukrainian operators to prolong the agreement, which was first signed in April 2022, to mutually lower the rates they must sustain to connect calls across borders. Affordable calls allow those seeking shelter in Europe to reach family and friends in Ukraine, and vice versa.

The Body of European regulators of electronic communications (BEREC) monitors the impact of the agreement. The latest data demonstrates that the agreement has been efficient in allowing operators to provide affordable calls across borders. When it comes to inter-operator rates for cross-border calls, operators in the European Economic Area (EEA) that are part of the agreement are subject to significantly lower rates than those operators who have not signed it.

The Commission urges all operators to join the agreement. An updated list of signatories can be found online.

In parallel, the Commission has been preparing to integrate Ukraine into the EU Roaming area, which would provide a more stable and longer-term solution. In April 2023, the EU-Ukraine association committee adopted the Commission's proposal for Ukraine to join the EU Roaming rules. The next step is for Ukraine to fully align their legislation with that of the EU and then for the Council of the European Union to adopt the final decision. 

More information is available online.  

(For more information: Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 2 295 86 15; Marietta Grammenou – Tel.: +32 2 298 35 83)