Increasing interest in building high-speed broadband connections in rural areas – FICORA has granted a quarter of the state aidsPublished 11.07.2013 So far, FICORA has granted circa a quarter, or over EUR 15 million, of the state aids targeted to the Broadband 2015 project*. The state aids have been granted for the building of high-speed broadband networks in sparsely populated areas.
By the end of June 2013, FICORA has granted state aid for 35 broadband projects. In addition to state aid, the regional centres for economic development, transport and the environment (EDTEs) have funded 27 projects with EUR 14 million. Municipalities participate also in the funding of the projects with their own financial contribution. The highest individual state aid so far, over EUR 4 million, has been granted to the broadband project in Pudasjärvi.
Majority of the new subscriptions in rural areas with a connection speed of 100M
By the end of 2012, 23 broadband projects, funded by FICORA or EDTEs, have been completed in Finland. The state and the EU have granted a total of almost EUR 8 million to these projects, and over 2,200 kilometres of broadband network has been built. Approximately 2,750 households or companies have acquired a subscription in the networks that have been built with the help of state aid. The connection speed in two thirds of the ordered subscriptions is 100 Mbps.
A high-speed broadband connection enables problem-free TV and Video-On-Demand services for several simultaneous users. In addition, the operational preconditions for the distant solutions in regards of business activities and the future social welfare and health care will be improved by means of fast and reliable connections. With the help of the funded networks, a high-speed broadband connection is available for about 9,000 new households.
Sufficiency of state funding uncertain
The Broadband 2015 project really took off during 2012, and currently there is a lot of interest in starting new projects. However, the uncertainty about the sufficiency of state funding can slow down launching of projects.
- At the moment, there are so many state aid applications pending that the support funds will probably run out, states Petri Makkonen, Deputy Director of Basic Services Unit.
Päivi Peltola-Ojala, Head of Broadband and Media Group, tel. +358 295 390 539
Petri Makkonen, Deputy Director of Basic Services Unit, tel. +358 295 390 516
On a yearly basis, FICORA follows the development of the availability of high-speed broadband in the whole of Finland. FICORA published the availability situation of high-speed broadband for the first time on 9 July 2013.
* The objective of the Broadband 2015 project is to improve the availability of high-speed broadband, especially in sparsely populated areas covered by circa 120,000 households. A total of EUR 63 million worth of state aid has been targeted to the projects.