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Berlin Senate approves strategy to provide internet to all citizens

Berlin Senate approves strategy to provide internet to all citizens

The Gigabit Strategy will democratise internet access in Germany

The Berlin Senate approved a piece of legislation on 15 June 2021 that will greatly expand the fibre optic coverage in the city. Deputy Governing Mayor and Senator for Economics, Energy and Business, Ramona Pop submitted the proposal whose goal is to give every Berliner a fibre optic connection. The city will help coordinate the efforts in the long-term, working to expand the existing 5G coverage.

A long-term strategy that will increase economic growth and social participation in the city

The Gigabit Strategy builds upon the Berlin Broadband Portal that started working back in November 2019. The Broadband Portal had a very simple and effective concept – it allowed citizens and companies to report gaps in internet coverage and connect the supply with the demand.

Because the state of Berlin cannot intervene directly in broadband expansion, it happily provides a mediation tool between the consumer and the expanding telecommunication companies.

If you are a citizen, you can report your demand and a company can rise to the occasion

All relevant players participated during the planning phase of the strategy: Senate departments, the telecommunications industry as well as the Berlin Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Handwerkskammer Berlin (The Chamber of Crafts), and the Association of Business Associations in Berlin and Brandenburg (UVB) as representatives of the local consumers.

In a press release for the City of Berlin, Senator Ramona Pop stated: “With this high-speed internet strategy, the State of Berlin is setting clear goals for the first time in the expansion of wired connections and telecommunications, because Berliners need fast Internet in all districts - in the inner city as well as in the outskirts. The core of our strategy is to combine private-sector investments with public monitoring."

This statement echoed one made earlier this year by the Bundestag reaffirming the goals of the digital expansion. According to the statement made in mid-2020, about 93% of households had accesses to the internet at about 50 Mbit/s. However, the urban-rural divide, when it comes to the availability of the internet, is very apparent, carrying with it a notable lack of fibre optic connections.  

The new high-speed internet strategy for Berlin signals a nationwide push for Germany, as the country is trying to set itself up to be a leader in the 5G market.

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