By the end of 2020, even the remotest municipality in the Slovak Republic will have at least 30 Mbit/s Internet access, Deputy Prime Minister for Digitisation Peter Pellegrini and telecom operators Slovak Telekom, Orange and O2 agreed on 6 February.
Getting all of Slovakia connected to the Internet has been a priority for the Deputy Prime Minister. In recent years the country’s Agency for Network and Electronic Services (NASES) and the telecom operators have been planning and constructing regional networks linked to the country’s Internet backbone.
As part of the construction of this ‘backhaul network’, NASES organised four public consultations, the first of which took place in 2016. In a preparatory study in 2015, NASES found 1808 municipalities without adequate Internet access.
“By the end of 2020, every village in Slovakia should be able to connect to fast Internet, which I think is fantastic,” Mr Pellegrini is quoted as saying in an announcement by NASES. “I am very glad that we managed to reach an agreement with the operators.”
High-speed Internet is a basic necessity, NASES quotes the Deputy Prime Minister as saying, that is essential for the viability and future development of remote regions. Broadband allows people to work from home, and enables entrepreneurs to create new companies. Fast Internet can help remote areas retain their young citizens by helping with their studies and creating local jobs.
NASES also quotes the telecom operators, with the CEO of Orange Slovensko calling on the municipalities to cooperate in the construction process.