Govt introduces new watchdog; AFTIC to replace SeCom, CNC

5 May 2015

The Argentinian authorities have confirmed that they have created a new telecoms regulator named the Federal Authority for Information Technology & Communications – Autoridad Federal de las Tecnologias de la Informacion y las Comunicaciones (AFTIC), via Presidential Decree 677/2015 which was published in the Official Gazette on 29 April 2015. The new watchdog will replace the Comision Nacional de Comunicaciones (CNC), which was founded back in 1996, and its supervisory body, the Secretaria de Comunicaciones (SeCom). The streamlining process will also see AFTIC absorb the respective operations of state-run ventures ARSAT, Nacional Argentina Conectada and Correo Argentino.

TeleGeography notes that the introduction of a new regulatory body has been on the cards since December 2014, when the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the National Congress, approved a new telecommunications law, the ‘Digital Argentina Law’ (Nueva Ley De Comunicaciones – Argentina Digital), replacing the ‘obsolete’ legislation that dated back to 1972.

The Ministry of Federal Planning, Public Investment & Services (MinPlan) reports on its website that, under last week’s decree, the transfer of the telecoms Secretariat to the new Federal Authority will be made within 30 days. The board of AFTIC will have seven members: two appointed by the National Executive (Poder Ejecutivo Nacional, headed by the country’s President); three selected by the Bicameral Commission for the Promotion and Monitoring of Audiovisual Communication, Telecommunications Technologies & Digitalisation (on behalf of the legislature); one representative of the Provinces and the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires (Ciudad Autonoma de Buenos Aires – CABA); and one appointed by the Federal Council of Telecommunications Technology and Digitisation, representing all stakeholders in the ICT ecosystem.