International Telecommunication Union   ITU
عربي  |  中文  |  Espa˝ol  |  Franšais  |  Русский
 
Site Map Contact us Print Version
 
Home : ITU-D : Regulatory and Market Environment
 
   

 

REPUBLIC OF LATVIA

Law On Telecommunications

Enacted 04.05.1993

 

Terms used in the Law:

Telecommunications - a system of information transmission which is

organized by utilizing cable and wireless equipment, the functioning of

which is based upon electrical processes and electromagnetic waves (radio

and light waves).

 

Public telecommunications network - the infrastructure meant for the

general use of physical persons and legal entities for the transmission of

a signal between two or more defined network terminating points by

utilizing cables, radio waves and optical transmission systems or any other

electromagnetic process. There is one public telecommunications network in

the Republic of Latvia.

 

Specialized State telecommunications networks - telecommunications

networks envisioned for the defence forces, the railway, water and air

transportation, energy supply, radio and television and other State

institutions.

 

Public mobile radio telecommunications networks - networks which are

meant for the general use of physical persons and legal entities and which

ensure the transmission of a signal between mobile telecommunications

equipment, as well as communications with the public telecommunications

network.

 

Network terminating points - all the physical connections made in

accordance with the technical regulations, which are a part of the public

telecommunications network and are essential for connecting and exchanging

the telecommunications user's equipment in the public telecommunications

network.

 

Technical regulations - documents which define the specific requirements

and parameters of the telecommunications equipment and which must be

observed by physical persons and legal entities when connecting the

particular equipment to telecommunications networks or other

telecommunications equipment.

 

Standardization certificate - a document which certifies that the

particular telecommunications equipment conforms to the technical

requirements of the telecommunications network.

 

Telecommunications user - a physical person or legal entity whose

equipment has been connected to the telecommunications network in the

specified manner, or a person who utilizes telecommunications services.

 

Basic telecommunications services - telecommunications services which

ensure the transmission of signals and their routing in telecommunications

networks.

 

Enhanced telecommunications services - various telecommunications

services which are not included in the basic telecommunications services

and are provided by utilizing the public telecommunications network.

 

Network operator - a legal entity which controls the public

telecommunications network or a public mobile radio telecommunications

network, and develops it and commercially exploits it.

 

Telecommunications organization - a business company that operates the

public telecommunications network and has been established in accordance

with the law.

Chapter I

GENERAL PROVISIONS

 

Article 1. Purpose of the Law

This Law defines the rights, obligations and responsibilities of

telecommunications users, network operators and State institutions which

are associated with the administration and exploitation of

telecommunications networks, connection to the public telecommunications

network, the provision of telecommunications services, as well as State

control and supervision over the allocation of radio frequencies and the

utilization of the radio frequency spectrum.

 

Article 2. Legal basis for telecommunications activities

1. In the course of exploiting telecommunications networks, developing

these networks and providing telecommunications services, physical persons

and legal entities shall observe the laws of the Republic of Latvia,

international agreements and conventions, as well as standards of

international organizations which the Republic of Latvia has adopted as

binding. The Republic of Latvia's representation in international

telecommunications organizations is determined by the Republic of Latvia

Government or, upon its authorization, by the Republic of Latvia Ministry

of Transportation.

 

2. The telecommunications organization shall operate under the

conditions of a natural monopoly as defined by the December 3, 1991

Republic of Latvia Law "On the Restriction of Competition and Monopolies"

(The Republic of Latvia Supreme Council and Government Reporter, No.51,

1991), whereby the tariffs of the basic telecommunications services that it

provides are regulated by the Telecommunications Tariff Council.

 

Chapter II

STATE ADMINISTRATION IN THE FIELD OF TELECOMMUNICATIONS

 

Article 3. Powers of the Republic of Latvia Ministry of Transportation

State administration and policy in the field of telecommunications, are

carried out, and determined by, the Republic of Latvia Ministry of

Transportation.

 

Article 4. Utilization of radio frequency spectrum and the

certification of telecommunications equipment

1. Physical persons and legal entities are permitted to utilize the

radio frequency spectrum only after receiving a frequency use permit

(license).

 

2. Control and supervision over radio communications and the utilization

of the entire range of the radio frequency spectrum is carried out by the

Republic of Latvia Ministry of Transportation. The Ministry also drafts the

plans for the utilization of the radio frequency spectrum according to

international standards, reviews requests for the utilization of radio

frequencies and issues frequency use permits (licenses) in accordance with

the procedure set by the Republic of Latvia Council of Ministers, as well

as determines the bands of frequency for free use.

 

3. If an occupied frequency is requested by another physical person or

legal entity and this person or entity is assigned the frequency, then the

person or entity shall, upon mutual agreement with the other party, cover

the expenses and losses associated with changing frequencies.

 

4. The Republic of Latvia Ministry of Transportation issues

standardization certificates for the equipment to be utilized in

telecommunications networks and determines the technical specifications

required of radio equipment.

 

5. Physical persons and legal entities shall not connect

telecommunications equipment to the public telecommunications network or to

a public mobile radio telecommunications network if a standardization

certificate has not been issued for that make and model number of

telecommunications equipment.

 

Chapter III

TELECOMMUNICATIONS SERVICES

 

Article 5. Exclusive rights of the telecommunications organization

1. The telecommunications organization has exclusive rights to:

1) manage, develop and exploit the public telecommunications

network; and

2) conduct a commercial business by providing telecommunications

users in the Republic of Latvia with all types of basic

telecommunications services, except those basic telecommunications

services which are included in the permits (licenses) issued to

establish public mobile radio telecommunications networks.

 

2. The telecommunications organization does not have exclusive rights to

provide terminal equipment to telecommunications users.

 

3. If physical persons or legal entities infringe upon the exclusive

rights granted to the telecommunications organization in this Article, the

telecommunications organization is entitled to go to court with a request

to terminate the infringement and to collect compensation for the losses

incurred from the guilty party in the procedure provided by law.

 

4. The exclusive rights granted under this Law to the telecommunications

organization may not be revoked earlier than in 20 years. The

telecommunications organization shall not be paid compensation if the

exclusive rights are revoked after 20 years.

 

Article 6. Rights of the telecommunications organization

1. The telecommunications organization is entitled to disconnect the

equipment of a telecommunications user from the public telecommunications

network if the telecommunications user does not pay for the

telecommunications services utilized or uses the public telecommunications

network by violating the regulations on its use.

 

2. The Telecommunications Tariff Council determines the procedures for

payment for telecommunications services, payment for overdue amounts, and

collection of fines.

 

3. Upon the request of a physical person or legal entity, the

telecommunications organization shall issue the technical specifications

for connection of the telecommunications user's equipment to the public

telecommunications network.

 

4. The telecommunications organization is authorized to partially

delegate the provision of basic telecommunications services, as defined in

this Law, to other legal entities on a contractual basis.

 

5. The telecommunications organization is prohibited from carrying on a

business activity associated with the manufacturing of telecommunications

equipment for sale.

 

Article 7. Obligations of the telecommunications organization

The telecommunications organization's obligation is:

 

1) to develop the infrastructure of the public telecommunications

network so as to ensure the provision of quality basic

telecommunications services which conform to international standards

and to ensure the accessibility of these services to all Republic of

Latvia residents;

 

2) to ensure the right to the users of telecommunications services

to connect to the public telecommunications network on a

non-discriminatory basis;

 

3) to ensure that the public telecommunications network is used in

compliance with the technical standards; and

 

4) to publish an annual report of its activity.

 

Article 8. Establishment of tariffs for basic telecommunications

services

1. The tariffs for the basic telecommunications services specified in

Article 13 of this Law shall be set by the Telecommunications Tariff

Council. A notice shall be published in the press one month before any

changes in tariffs are made.

 

2. The telecommunications organization may appeal a decision of the

Telecommunications Tariff Council within one month from the date the

decision is announced. The Telecommunications Tariff Council shall review

this appeal and make a decision within one month's time. If the

Telecommunications Tariff Council rejects the appeal of the

telecommunications organization, the Republic of Latvia Government shall

make the final decision on the matter.

 

3. If the telecommunications organization provides to the

telecommunications user telecommunications services, for which the

Telecommunications Tariff Council has not established tariffs, the user

shall pay for such services as specified in the agreed contract.

 

Article 9. Establishment of the Telecommunications Tariff Council

The Telecommunications Tariff Council shall be appointed by the Republic

of Latvia Government for a period of five years upon the recommendation of

the Minister of Transportation and shall be an independent body composed of

seven experts. The regulations of the Telecommunications Tariff Council

shall be approved by the Minister of Transportation. The Telecommunications

Tariff Council shall be financed from the State budget.

 

Article 10. Assignment of the Telecommunications Tariff Council

The assignment of the Telecommunications Tariff Council is:

1) to set tariffs and rates for basic telecommunications services;

2) to review complaints from telecommunications users on the

application of tariffs for basic telecommunications services; and

3) to submit recommendations to the telecommunications

organization on the application of tariffs for basic

telecommunications services.

 

Article 11. Fundamental principles of establishing tariffs for

basic telecommunications services

1. The Telecommunications Tariff Council shall promote the technological

development of the public telecommunications network infrastructure and

shall create an incentive for the telecommunications network operator to

reduce the actual costs of services and to implement modern technology and

effective management methods (incentive based price cap regulation).

 

2. The Telecommunications Tariff Council shall take into account the

economic situation in the Republic of Latvia and the effectiveness of the

investment in the telecommunications organization.

 

3. The objective of the Telecommunications Tariff Council is the achieve

tariffs for basic telecommunications services that approach the actual

costs of services provided to telecommunications users.

 

Article 12. Rights of the Telecommunications Tariff Council

The Telecommunications Tariff Council shall have the right to request,

and receive within one month, the necessary financial information and other

information related to the tariffs of basic telecommunications services

from the telecommunications organization.

 

Article 13. Types of basic telecommunications services

Types of basic telecommunications services include the following:

1) the transmission of voice and other signals between the public

telecommunications network in the Republic of Latvia and foreign

telecommunications networks, as well as between foreign public

telecommunications networks and telecommunications networks in the

Republic of Latvia;

 

2) the transmission of voice and other signals between the

equipment of telecommunication users connected to telecommunications

networks;

 

3) the transmission of radio and television programs over the

public telecommunications network;

 

4) the leasing of telecommunications network lines;

 

5) the provision of emergency (fire fighting, police, medical,

etc.) service calls, free of charge, to telecommunications users or

telecommunications networks;

 

6) the installation and exploitation of pay phones connected to

the public telecommunications network.

 

Article 14. Enhanced telecommunications services

Legal entities, in accordance with the September 26, 1990 Republic of

Latvia Law "On Entrepreneurial Activity" (The Republic of Latvia Supreme

Council and Government Reporter, No.42, 1990), may provide enhanced

telecommunications services by utilizing basic telecommunications services

and by co-ordinating the terms of their interconnection to the public

telecommunications network with the telecommunications organization. The

tariffs for enhanced telecommunications services shall be set by the

entrepreneur. Basic telecommunications services shall be paid for in

accordance with the approved tariffs.

 

Chapter IV

DEVELOPMENT OF SPECIALIZED STATE TELECOMMUNICATIONS

NETWORKS AND PUBLIC MOBILE RADIO TELECOMMUNICATIONS

NETWORKS AND THEIR INTERCONNECTION TO THE PUBLIC

TELECOMMUNICATIONS NETWORK; USE OF SATELLITE

COMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT; PRIVATE TELECOMMUNICATIONS

NETWORKS

 

Article 15. Development of specialized State telecommunications networks and their interconnection to the public telecommunications network

1. Specialized State telecommunications networks shall be created or

liquidated upon a decision of the corresponding State institution, in

co-ordination with the Republic of Latvia Ministry of Transportation.

 

2. The conditions which shall be observed by specialized State

telecommunications networks when interconnecting to the public

telecommunications network shall be set by the telecommunications

organization.

 

3. The regulations on the use of a specialized State telecommunications

network shall be set by the management of the corresponding network.

 

Article 16. Establishment of public mobile radio telecommunications networks and their interconnection to the public telecommunications network

Licenses for the establishment of public mobile radio telecommunications

networks shall be issued by the Republic of Latvia Ministry of

Transportation. The conditions which shall be observed by a public mobile

radio telecommunications network when interconnecting to the public

telecommunications network shall be set by the telecommunications

organization. These conditions are the same for all public mobile radio

telecommunications networks. The regulations on the use of every public

mobile radio telecommunications network and the tariffs for services

provided by them, shall be set by the corresponding network operator. A

license shall be issued within one month from the submittal date of an

application or, within the same term, a written substantiated refusal shall

be given.

 

Article 17. Use of satellite communications equipment

1. The use of satellite communications equipment by the public

telecommunications network shall be co-ordinated with international

satellite organizations by the Republic of Latvia Ministry of

Transportation.

2. All persons who have been issued a license by the Republic of Latvia

Ministry of Transportation, have the right to set up and use satellite

communications equipment with combined receivers and transmitters. A

license shall be issued within one month from the submittal date of an

application or, within the same term, a written substantiated refusal shall

be given.

 

Article 18. Private telecommunications networks

Physical persons and legal entities shall have the right set up private

telecommunications networks, which may only be used by these physical

persons and legal entities for their own needs, and only so long as they

respect the exclusive rights of the telecommunications organization.

 

Article 19. General regulations on the installation and exploitation of telecommunications networks

1. The regulations which must be observed in the installation,

exploitation or reconstruction of telecommunications networks, as well as

in the construction and reconstruction of buildings used for the needs of

telecommunications are prepared and approved by the Republic of Latvia

Ministry of Transportation in accordance with the provisions of this Law

and other normative acts. The above mentioned regulations are mandatory for

all legal entities and physical persons.

 

2. Provided that laws concerning land issues are respected. State

institutions and the telecommunications organization shall have the right,

where necessary, to install telecommunications lines and distribution

equipment within the boundaries of the State, local governments and private

property, as well as in the air space above this property, by co-ordinating

this installation with the landowners, in advance, and preserving the

property itself. Underground, aboveground and aerial cables, and other

equipment of telecommunications networks shall be located in cities and in

other heavily populated areas in between the designated "red" lines on

roads. In places where the "red" lines have not been designated, the

equipment shall be located between the road surface and the building. The

installation of submarine cables for water crossings shall be co-ordinated

with the Republic of Latvia Ministry of Maritime Affairs. The installation

of telecommunications lines and distribution equipment in protected nature

areas shall be co-ordinated with the highest State environmental protection

institution and the administrative institution of the protected area. The

procedure by which electric lines, roadways and railway zones are to be

used for telecommunications lines shall be prescribed by the respective

Republic of Latvia laws and normative acts.

 

3. The telecommunications organization and owners of the specialized

State telecommunications networks and private telecommunications networks

shall have permanent easement rights to land and buildings necessary for

the provision of telecommunications services. If the parties cannot agree

on the easement conditions, easements shall be established by a court

decision.

 

4. The relocation of existing telecommunications lines, upon the request

of the landowner or land user, shall be carried out at the expense of the

landowner or land user.

 

5. A landlord may not prohibit the use of the facade, basement, attic

and staircases of a building for the installation of subscriber lines,

cables and fittings, and the landlord may not prohibit a tenant or

subtenant from installing telecommunications network equipment. A tenant

may not prohibit his/her subtenant from the same. The tenant or subtenant

shall cover all losses that he/she has caused to third parties in

installing and using the telecommunications network equipment.

 

Article 20. Protection of telecommunications networks

1. Protection of telecommunications networks is carried out in the

procedure prescribed by the Ministry of Transportation.

 

2. It is prohibited to damage telecommunications network lines or to

interfere in the communications maintained along these lines.

 

3. In order to provide the telecommunications network with protection

from any damage, zones of protection (protected area, track of land) shall

be created astride telecommunications network lines, for which the

restrictions on width and use shall be determined by the Republic of Latvia

Ministry of Transportation.

 

4. Physical persons and legal entities who supervise a

telecommunications network line within a protected zone (protected area,

track of land), are, subject to observance of the regulations governing the

surrounding environment, permitted to:

 

i) build drives, bridges and other structure (pits, ditches, etc.)

which are necessary to service or repair the telecommunications

network lines; and

ii) cut tree branches, clear interfering bushes and trees, and cut

grass in order to maintain the proper width of the established

protected zones (protected areas, track of land).

 

5. Land work and all types of construction exceeding a 50 cm depth in

the protected zone of underground telecommunications lines (protected area,

track of land) may be carried out only with approval from the

telecommunications organization or the network operator.

 

Article 21. Procedure for the co-ordination of projects for the construction and reconstruction of telecommunications networks

The procedure for the co-ordination of projects for the construction and

reconstruction of telecommunications lines is established by the Republic

of Latvia Ministry of Transportation.

 

Article 22. Compensation of losses related to the installation of

telecommunications networks

Upon completion of the installation of telecommunications network lines

and structures, the telecommunications organization or the State

institution shall restore the real property to proper order. If within one

month after completion of the installation, or within another term agreed

upon by the property owner, the telecommunications organization or the

State institution does not accomplish the above mentioned task, the owner

shall have the right to restore the real property to proper order and to

collect from the telecommunications organization or State institution the

sums required to cover the expenses and losses associate with the

restoration of the property.

 

Chapter V

MAINTENANCE OF THE QUALITY OF TELECOMMUNICATIONS SERVICES

 

Article 23. Requirements of telecommunications service quality

1. The network operators are responsible for ensuring the quality of

telecommunications services in accordance with the standards, technical

regulations and stipulations in the contracts for the provision of

services.

 

2. The rights of telecommunications users are protected, and network

operators ensure that these rights are enjoyed in accordance with the

Republic of Latvia October 28, 1992 Law "On the Protection of Consumer

Rights" (The Republic of Latvia Supreme Council and Government Reporter,

No.46, 1992).

 

3. The telecommunications Tariff Council shall establish the procedure

in which the telecommunications user has the right to request the

recalculation of the charges for telecommunications services or

compensation in cases where services do not comply with the standards and

technical regulations or the standards of quality of services as stipulated

in an agreement.

 

Article 24. Protection of the privacy of transmitted information

1. The employees of network operators and State institutions are

prohibited from divulging any information which is transmitted using

telecommunications networks.

 

2. Connection to a telecommunications network for the purpose of

intercepting information and listening to conversations, may only be

carried out as permitted by Republic of Latvia laws.

 

Article 25. Responsibility for the non-observance of legislative acts concerning telecommunications issues

Persons who have violated the regulations or restrictions provided in

this Law, are held accountable in accordance with the Criminal Code of

Latvia or the Administrative Violations Code of Latvia.

 

Chairman, Supreme Council

Republic of Latvia A.Gorbunovs

 

Secretary, Supreme Council

Republic of Latvia I.Daudi■s

 

Riga, May 4, 1993

 

The authenticity of the translation is confirmed by

Secretary of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Latvia.

For purposes of interpretation, the original Latvian text is to be regarded as official.

 

Top - Feedback - Contact Us -  Copyright ę ITU 2007 All Rights Reserved
Contact for this page : BDT Web Support
Updated : 2003-04-30