ERGA Plenary: Members discuss the EMFA, elect the new Board and look ahead to the work programme for 2023

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05 12 2022
Brussels, 5 December 2022
ERGA Plenary: Members discuss the EMFA, elect the new Board and look ahead to the work programme for 2023
On December 1st, ERGA members met for the group’s bi-annual meeting taking stock of the last year’s activities and preparing the work for the coming year. The plenary meeting was opened by a speech by Valère Moutarlier, Head of Cabinet of Commissioner Breton. He discussed with the ERGA Plenary, acknowledging the significant role of ERGA and highlighting the importance of the new European Board for Media Services under the European Media Freedom Act (EMFA). Under the proposal for the EMFA, the new Board would replace ERGA and be entrusted with new tasks and responsibilities.
While 2022 has been a very intense and challenging year, 2023 also promises to be a very crucial year for media services and NRAs. In the upcoming year negotiations of the co-legislators on the EMFA should begin, the Digital Services Act (DSA) will entry in application, and the AVMS Directive will be finally transposed in all Member States. On top of this, the next year will be characterised by ongoing negotiations concerning the proposal for a Regulation on transparency and targeting of political advertising and the implementation of the strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation. ERGA is very aware of the challenges ahead and has adopted an ambitious work programme for 2023 that will be implemented under the presidency of the Italian NRA, AGCOM.
More particularly, ERGA members decided to set-up three subgroups and two action groups in order to carry out the 2023 work programme. Subgroup 1 will deal with the implementation and the enforcement of the European framework for audiovisual media services, with a specific focus on the AVMS Directive, cross-border issues, and the related procedures, including the ERGA Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Subgroup 2 will devote its work to follow the legislative debate concerning the EU regulatory framework relevant for media, and in particular the EMFA. It will support the European Commission and contribute to the legislative debate with special attention to the EMFA. Subgroup 3 will work on countering disinformation and strengthening democracy in the digital environment. This includes supporting the Commission in the monitoring activities related to the implementation of the Code of Practice on Disinformation and activities related to ERGA’s participation in the Permanent Task-Force of the Code, as well as following the adoption of the Regulation on transparency and targeting of political advertising. Action group 1 will focus on ERGA’s internal governance, procedures and communication needs. Finally, members decided to dedicate action group 2 to media literacy. In addition, ERGA will also participate in the high-level group foreseen in the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The newly elected ERGA Chair, Giacomo Lasorella has emphasized that this year will be crucial for the update of the EU media framework, which
requires enhanced cooperation within ERGA and its members. “The European Commission has launched an unprecedented legislative review to meet the digital transformation challenge in the media landscape. Both the effective implementation of the newly adopted tools - such as the Digital Services Act - and the swift adoption of the proposed legislation - such as the Regulation on the transparency of political advertising and notably the European Media Freedom Act - demand cooperation among national regulators within ERGA to achieve common solutions in a truly European spirit”, said the new ERGA Chair.
The plenary marked also the election of ERGA’s Chair and Board. The current ERGA Vice-Chair, Giacomo Lasorella, President of AGCOM (Italy), was elected as ERGA Chair for 2023. Carlos Aguilar Paredes, Member of the Board of CNMC (Spain), was elected as the new Vice Chair. In addition, ERGA members elected the following Board members: Celene Craig, Chief Executive of BAI (Ireland), Karim Ibourki, President of CSA (Belgium) and Susanne Lackner, Vice-Chair of KommAustria (Austria).
The plenary was also the chance for the incumbent ERGA Chair, Karim Ibourki, to thank all members for their contribution and to pass the baton to the new Chair: “It has been a very intensive and fruitful year. Together with my team I have been fully committed to serve at best the interests of ERGA. I am sure that also our Italian colleagues will continue to do so in 2023, which will be a crucial year for audiovisual regulation”.
About ERGA:
The European Regulators Group for Audiovisual Media Services (ERGA) consists of the national regulatory authorities in the field of audiovisual media services. ERGA advises the European Commission and facilitates cooperation between the regulatory bodies in the EU. Mr Karim Ibourki, President of the Belgian CSA (Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel) is the current Chairperson of ERGA.