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Italy greenlights €12bn ultra-fast broadband network

The Italian government has approved a plan, worth €12 billion, for the deployment of a high speed broadband telecommunications infrastructure.

According to Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, telecommunications operators are expected to contribute €5 billion for the roll out and the state will put up the remaining €7 billion. He added that €2.2 billion will be available immediately, inviting operators to get involved.

Renzi said that work on the project will begin this autumn and the goal is to achieve total coverage of the country by 2020. The fibre optic network will replace the existing copper wires that run into subscribers’ homes.

Separately, Telecom Italia has announced it will invest more than €750 million in broadband Internet services for the centre-south area.

The operator won the contract, involving fibre optical services, through a public tender issued by the Ministry of Economic Development.

The plan is to extend broadband services to about 10 million people in more than 760 municipalities in seven regions (Molise, Lazio, Campania, Puglia, Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily), as part of a public-private partnership.

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