Under a new proposal put forward this week as part of the European Union’s Digital Agenda for Europe, all member states would offer a minimum level of 30Mbps broadband to everybody by the year 2020. One of the roadblocks to this lofty goal seems to be a lack of funding; last month over $9 billion earmarked for broadband deployment was cut from the EU budget. Despite this major setback, EU Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes is still pushing for hitting that 2020 target.
In a speech in Brussels today Kroes offered a plan that would use existing infrastructure and construction sites to meet the goal and cut costs.
"Why spend extra money and effort duplicating what's already there?" she noted in her speech. "So this regulation will ensure telecoms companies know what is already out there and will open up access to it—with fair and reasonable prices and conditions."
Kroes also called for broadband operators and providers to work together, and for the EU to get rid of the red tape that impedes progress.
"Conditions would be more transparent, requests could be made through a single point, and by default decisions should be taken within six months," she said.
Finally Kroes called for more regulations on new buildings that would require mandatory high speed broadband.
Of course this is just a draft proposal which still has to make its way through the European Parliament. The wheels of bureaucracy are generally mind numbingly slow… You can read the proposal here.
Source: Ars Technica