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French Government solicits ARCEP's opinion on the deployment of IPv6 

Paris, 26 January 2016

Government referrals to ARCEP

The Act on Growth, business and equal economic opportunity, adopted on 6 August 2015, introduces the possibility for Ministries responsible for electronic communications and postal affairs to solicit advice from ARCEP on all matters that fall under its purview, whereas previously they could only consult the Authority on draft legislation.

This possibility was used three times in 2015:

1. Emmanuel Macron solicited ARCEP's opinion on the current structure of the use being made of bandwidth on internet access networks in France, and on the possibility of measuring it (opinion issued on 7 July);

2. Emmanuel Macron, Fleur Pellerin and Michel Sapin solicited ARCEP's opinion on the cost of providing a print media transportation and distribution solution (opinion issued on 10 July);

3. Axelle Lemaire solicited ARCEP's opinion on price supervision for international roaming (opinion issued on 15 September).

These referrals are fully in keeping with the new methods of intervention identified in ARCEP's Strategic review (#lARCEPpivote): to serve as an independent expert within the instituional ecosystem.

Report on the status of IPv6 deployment

In a letter dated 11 January 2016, the Secretary of state for digital affairs, Axelle Lemaire, solicited ARCEP's opinion on the deployment of the IPv6 protocol. The minister was of the opinion that the delay in France's transition to this new protocol could eventually impede the sector's ability to meet new digital challenges, such as the advent of the Internet of Things.

The task conferred on ARCEP is to deliver a status report on IPv6 deployment in France, and to identify the reasons for the delays observed in this migration, as well as the consequences of this delay on the sector. The Authority has also been asked to propose an action plan that would encourage and assist consumers and businesses to make the transition and, finally, to create an observatory to monitor this transition.

As it was invited to do in this engagement letter, ARCEP plans on soliciting the expertise of France's domain name registry, the Association française pour le nommage internet en coopération (AFNIC) for the purposes of this project. A series of meetings will also be held to consult with businesses and digital industry stakeholders concerned by this issue.

The conclusions of this report are to be submitted to the Government by 1 May 2016.

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