Broadband projects in rural areas are proceeding all around Finland - over half of the aid granted

Published 01.07.2014 | Updated 03.07.2014

So far, EUR 32,9 million, which is over half of the investment aid worth of EUR 64 million intended for broadband projects in rural areas, has been granted. Less than one-fourth of the aid, i.e. EUR 14,2 million, has been paid. The aid is paid only after the project is completed. Some of the projects are entitled to an advanced payment of the aid which is half of the granted aid.

Since 2011, FICORA has granted aid for the building of a fibre-optic network in rural areas. The nationwide preparation of the Broadband 2015 projects started in early 2009 and the building of the first projects started in the summer of 2010. The building of the funded networks can continue until the summer of 2017, which means that less than half of the schedule for the implementation of the projects is currently remaining. The summer 2014 is the second summer when the building of the funded networks is very active throughout Finland.

State aid worth of nearly EUR 3.5 million was granted to the million project in the municipality of Ilomantsi

The largest building project of the broadband network so far is located in Ilomantsi, North Karelia. FICORA granted Ilomantsi state aid worth of EUR 3,490,800. The total budget of Ilonet Oy's project is approximately EUR 14,6 million. The municipality of Ilomantsi participates also in the funding of the project with its own financial contribution. By means of the aid, a fibre-optic network covering the entire municipality will be built. The network will be used for providing high-speed broadband subscriptions of 100 Mbps. The building of the network has already started and the network is estimated to be completed by the end of 2016.

The interest towards the projects has remained high, but the applicants are worried of the sufficiency of the state funding

There are state aid applications worth of approximately EUR 39 million pending at FICORA.

"The launching of new projects is planned all the time all around Finland. The applicants are worried whether the money allocated for the project is sufficient to implement all the planned projects. There is a clear need for the state aid because the current availability of high-speed mobile broadband of at least 30 Mbps outside towns and population centres is very poor. High-speed broadband is only available in 2,9 per cent of the areas subject to the state aid", states Päivi Peltola-Ojala, Head of Broadband and Media Group.

By the end of 2015, FICORA must make decisions on the state aid granted to the projects. By the end of 2017, the building of the project networks must be completed and the decisions related to the payment must be made.

Further information:

Päivi Peltola-Ojala, Head of Broadband and Media Group, tel. +358 295 390 539
Tapio Oikarainen, Communications Market Specialist, tel. +358 295 390 538

Key words: Internet , Broadband , Mobile broadband , Networks , Universal service , News

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