About Association of Telecommunication Operators
The need to found such subject resulted from the development and reforms forming a new telecommunication environment. The biggest impact is mainly caused by the privatization process, development of the regulatory framework and competitive environment. The liberalization in telecommunications, with the exception of the essential voice service, has enabled the origin of several companies providing telecommunication services mainly in the field of the Internet, leased lines, and data services. Long awaited liberalization commencing January 1, 2003 also brings competition in the so far monopoly telecommunication area. Therefore, there is a need for such organization which shall monitor the transparency in the regulatory area, unambiguous administration in the license area, open access to the network, principles for interconnection, pricing principles and other related issues.
These facts were the basis for development of the objectives of the Association of the Telecommunication Operators, and they are also reflected in the ATO activities, especially:
Due to the fact that January 1, 2003was the date of the opening of the telecommunication market in the Slovak Republic for competition in all telecommunication areas, the Association members undertake any required activities for the formation of the basic fair and equal conditions for competition in telecommunications.
The ATO is based on democratic principles. It respects different opinion and individual interests of its members. It persuades the formation of levers for definition and protection of unambiguous, clear and unchangeable rules for the entry to the liberal telecommunication market.
The founding of the Association was only the first step. Step by step the ATO have entrenched successfully in the specified areas, mainly in the area of the cooperation in the development of the new telecommunication legislation and the supervision on the transparency of the competitive environment. The Association also has the ambition to cooperate at the setting of the strategy of the development of the telecommunications in SR, and the generation of the National Strategy for the Information Society.
The Association is also open for the other interested entities among the telecommunication operators operating in the Slovak telecommunication market, as well as the companies cooperating with the status of the Associated member.