The broadband high speed is the backbone of telecommunications and the wider digital single market is what the European Commission is trying to build. But, to date, its diffusion is slowed down by rules and administrative practices at national and local levels. Furthermore, the works of civil engineering, for example excavations road for laying of the fibers, they represent up to 80% of the cost of installation of high-speed networks. Today’s proposal can save businesses 40 to 60 billion euro.
From these assumptions comes to the draft Regulation submitted by the Commission, an initiative that is part of the 10-point plan presented at the mid-term review of the Digital Agenda for Europe and that, once approved by Parliament and the Council, will be applicable throughout the EU.
The proposal is based on best practices implemented in Germany, Spain, France, Italy, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden and the UK, while leaving much of the organizational aspects to the discretion of Member States.
First, the Commission’s objective is to ensure that new and renovated buildings are designed for the broadband high speed and open access to the infrastructure – including cable ducts, pipes, shafts, stations, poles, masts, antenna installations, towers and other supporting constructions – a fair and reasonable even for the price.
Allow any network to negotiate agreements with other providers of infrastructure is another essential condition according to the European Commission, in order to put an end to the insufficient coordination of civil engineering works. Finally, the EU aims at simplifying authorization procedures – now slow and complex – especially with regard to masts and antennae, replacing them with an automatic grant or refusal within six months and activating one stop shop for the submission of applications.
Currently, the Commission points out, there is little transparency on existing physical infrastructure suitable for the installation of broadband and there are no adequate common standards for its spread throughout the territory of the EU. At the moment there is a market for physical infrastructure is not exploited the potential of using infrastructure belonging to other public services. Regulations in some Member States even discourage companies from cooperating physical services with telecom operators.