Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Ceisteanna (215)

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

215. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the circumstances under which encroachment by commercial operators onto the intervention area of the national broadband plan is deemed to have taken place; the mechanism by which his Department is notified of the intention to claim that encroachment has taken place; the method by which the contract signatory may claim the contingency set aside for this and whether this payment takes the form of a one-off payment. [49169/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Communications)

My Department recently conducted a public consultation to close the ongoing mapping exercise, seeking submissions from operators who wish to have their existing high speed broadband networks, or who have concrete plans to invest in high speed broadband networks over the next 7 years, to be included on the Department’s High Speed Broadband Map. That consultation was extended twice at the request of operators, resulting in a total nine week period for submissions and it closed on 30th September 2019. The updated Intervention Area proposed now represents 537,596 premises in the State.

The NBP contract provides a mechanism for National Broadband Ireland (NBI) to apply for compensation for encroachment where other commercial operators have deployed a future proofed high speed broadband service in advance of NBI's own deployment in the intervention area.

This subsidy is capped and can only be applied for where my Department determines a commercial deployment of high speed broadband meets the requirements set out in the NBP contract, specifically a deployment of a fibre or equivalent high speed broadband technology, and that this deployment has had a negative impact on NBI's business case. The mapping consultation, which has confirmed the intervention area, has reduced the risk of this element of contingency subsidy being required.