Hot discussions: Fibre for a Gigabit Society in Europe. At what cost?

“To date FTTH provides an ultimate solution for network providers to deliver services”


The FTTH Council study will be launched and discussed at the FTTH Conference in Marseille, France 14-16 February 2017

  The President of the FTTH Council Europe says FTTH for Europe can be achieved and that a more realistic discussion on deployment costs is needed in Europe.

  Brussels, 25 January 2017 – The FTTH Council Europe today made public the first results of its updated study on the cost of deploying FTTH throughout the EU as input to the ongoing legislative debate on the proposal for a European Electronic Communications Code.

  The cost model calculated the complete overlay of the EU28 countries with fibre (Fibre to the Home) in a greenfield scenario. The cost includes 100% homes passed and 50% connected. Accounting for the already existing fibre coverage and connections (approx. 30% and 10% respectively) the model shows that the outstanding costs of full fibre coverage in the EU are €156 billion. The re-use of existing infrastructure and effective implementation of the Cost Reduction Directive can lead to significant cost savings and could further bring down these costs.

  We believe that a transparent and realistic discussion is needed so that the co-legislators, end-users and investors are aware of the real costs of creating a Gigabit Society.

  ‘Our model was developed by COMSOF who are network designers and cost modelling experts. I don’t wish to understate the challenge that Europe faces or the size of the investment that will be needed but the challenge should not be overstated either. These cost estimates show that FTTH is achievable throughout the EU.’ said Erzsebet Fitori, Director General of the FTTH Council Europe.

  Ronan Kelly, the President of the FTTH Council Europe added ‘We can also see that Sweden, Spain and Portugal have FTTH coverage for instance that is over 80% – strongly suggesting that high fibre coverage can be realistically achieved. Both the EIB and Analysis Mason put the cost of a full FTTH network at between €220bn and €250bn with that number falling to €154bn with infrastructure reuse1.We need to have a realistic assessment of level of costs and their implications. Policy makers should not compromise in seeking the best networks for Europe and networks that can support 5G and next generation digital services.’  

About the FTTH Council Europe:

The FTTH Council Europe is an industry organisation with a mission to accelerate the availability of fibre-based, ultra-high-speed access networks to consumers and businesses. The Council promotes this technology because it will deliver a flow of new services that enhance the quality of life, contribute to a better environment and increase economic competitiveness. The FTTH Council Europe consists of 150 member companies.

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