Culture Media and Sport
David Mowat (Warrington South, Conservative)
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what recent discussions he has had on the future regulation of power line telecommunications devices; and if he will make a statement.
Mark Prisk (Minister of State (Business and Enterprise), Business, Innovation and Skills; Hertford and Stortford, Conservative)
I have been asked to reply.
I have had no such discussions, however my officials have responded to a number of inquiries concerning power line telecommunication (PLT) equipment and its compliance with the Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations. In common with most electronic products sold in the UK, PLT equipment is required to comply with the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Regulations 2006, which are based on the European Electromagnetic Compatibility Directive, 2004/108/EC.
Enforcement powers are delegated to the Office of Communication (Ofcom) where a radio spectrum protection or management issue occurs. Ofcom has investigated 219 incidents, with one still to resolve, but has not concluded that PLT products fail to comply with the essential requirements of the EMC Regulations. The essential requirements require that equipment shall be designed and manufactured, having regard to the state of the art and good engineering practice, so as to ensure that the electromagnetic disturbance generated does not exceed the level above which radio and telecommunications equipment or other equipment cannot operate as intended.
The technical solution to ensure the essential requirements of the Regulations are met will vary with the state of the art, latest good engineering practice, extent of knowledge and similar variables and no revision of the technical requirement is currently foreseen.
Power line equipment manufacturers are committed to continuous innovation as technology advances, allowing them to comply with the requirements and spirit of the regulations while providing products to better meet general consumer expectations and needs.