Paris, 11 July 2012
As ARCEP Chairman, Jean-Ludovic Silicani, committed to doing at the start of the year, yesterday afternoon the Authority’s Executive Board met with several Members of Parliament and the heads of the main local authority associations to discuss the issues surrounding digital regional development. This meeting, which serves to complete the many interactions that ARCEP has on a daily basis with local authorities, allowed Board members to take better stock of the expectations of elected officials who are involved in digital regional development.
Local authorities, who have already contributed to improving unbundling coverage in France over the past several years, today play a central role in planning wireline and wireless network rollouts, particularly as part of their regional digital development blueprints (schéma directeur territorial d’aménagement numérique or SDTAN). Local authorities are also involved in the deployment of new fibre to the home (FTTH) networks and schemes for increasing available bandwidth on existing systems, and so becoming major stakeholders in the sector. Elected officials must also manage the population’s high expectations over the swift advent of very high-speed mobile (4G) internet.
They have stressed the importance of implementing a national roadmap for this very large project which will help increase our country’s economic competitiveness, and give all citizens access to the essential services supplied by ultra high-speed access. Elected officials have pointed in particular to the need to work immediately to prevent a digital divide between the most densely populated areas and the most remote rural communities, particularly those located in mountain regions.
ARCEP continues to be fully devoted to digital regional development, and is ready to contribute to all new initiatives in this area.