Community funds guarantee RNG in rural areas

يجب أن يصدر القرار الأولي بشأن RNG في الربع الأول

The Government today announced the start of the first of several public tenders that will help to create new generation networks in rural areas of the country, where commercial investment may not be so attractive. They are eligible for competition in the Center, Alentejo and Algarve, North, Autonomous Region of Madeira and Autonomous Region of the Azores regions, in a total of 136 municipalities. All meet a set of conditions defined by the Government and the European Commission as potential indicators of info-exclusion in new technologies that justify support.

The projects that will take NGN to these parts of the country will be supported by EU funds. According to the Ministry of Public Works, Transport and Communications, proposals that request a lower level of public support will be privileged, as well as those in which the contractor undertakes to open the network to all operators and that includes retail proposals.

The proposals have yet to target the construction of networks with a minimum throughput of 30 Mbps. There are no charges for specific technologies.

It should be remembered that in the previous Community framework Portugal, like any other country in Europe, already had at its disposal a financing tool to give rise to the so-called community networks. The concept and spirit was identical and the eligibility also extended to a good part of the country (inland). Only four regions of the country competed, which ended up guaranteeing access to finance.

The projects that were born there are underway, with more or less delays compared to the defined timetable, as found by TeK, which has accompanied the development of these networks.

The public tender launched today by the Government concerns projects for the central zone, where 42 municipalities are eligible. The initiative is now called RNG in Rural Areas.

The signing of the memorandum of understanding with the European Investment Bank (EIB) and a union of Portuguese banks is also scheduled for tomorrow. According to Diário Económico, the agreement will make the 80 million euro credit line for the development of fiber viable, a sum that will come under special conditions to operators who signed the protocol with the Government.