Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Questions (448)

Jack Chambers


448. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if commercial operators will be barred from commercial roll-outs in the intervention area in the event that the contract for the national broadband plan is signed. [46380/19]

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Written answers (Question to Communications)

The telecoms market in Ireland is fully liberalised and regulated by the Commission for Communications Regulation, ComReg. The development and rollout of telecoms infrastructure is primarily a matter for private operators, operating on a commercial basis.

The National Broadband Plan (NBP) aims to ensure that every home, school and business in Ireland, regardless of how remote or rural, has access to high speed broadband. This is being achieved through a combination of commercial investment across Ireland and a State intervention in those areas where commercial operators acting alone are unlikely to invest, such as rural areas.

My Department recently conducted a public consultation to close the ongoing Intervention Area mapping exercise, seeking submissions from operators who wish to have their existing high speed broadband networks, or who have developed plans to invest in high speed broadband networks over the next 7 years, to be included on the Department’s High Speed Broadband Map. The findings of the consultation, which will be available in the coming weeks, will ensure that the State Intervention Area is up to date in advance of a contract being signed later this year.

Question No. 449 answered with Question No. 434.