21 January, 2022

Shaping Policies to Support Investment in Very High Capacity Networks

Executive summary

About this Report

Very High Capacity Networks (VHCN) lie at the heart of European Commission (EC) policy for the next decade (Digital Decade) and are essential for ensuring that Europe has resilient, secure and trustworthy digital infrastructure to underpin future prosperity. Upgraded networks are also integral to supporting the European Green Deal objectives and empower European citizens and businesses to promote rights and freedoms (supporting leisure, expression and interaction with public administration).

The EC has recently adopted ambitious Digital Compass targets of both full gigabit fibre network coverage for all European households and 5G coverage for all populated areas by 2030. The investment required to meet these targets is substantial. It has been estimated that an additional €150bn of investment is needed for full 5G rollout, while another €150bn is required to upgrade existing fixed infrastructure and roll out FTTH to gigabit speeds in Europe1. Given the scale of this investment, the EC needs to promote policies that incentivise VHCN deployment; such policies (including horizontal policies that apply to all sectors) need to be developed in a holistic, rather than piecemeal manner. Without this, Europe risks being unable to realise its full digital potential.

The aim of this report is therefore to identify and recommend improvements to European policies and regulations to better incentivise investment in VHCN, including policies related to the EC’s current consideration of changes to the Access/Costing recommendations. This includes policies within the fixed and mobile sectors as well as “horizontal” policies covering a wider number of sectors.

Read the full executive summary and report at the link below. 

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[1]     Source BCG report for ETNO

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