Auditors publish briefing on EU broadband plans14/09/17Government
The European Court of Auditors (ECA) has today (14 September) published an audit brief surrounding the EU’s plans for the provision of broadband services in Europe.
Audit briefs provide background information based on preparatory work undertaken before the start of an ongoing audit task and are published following the announcement of the audit.
The first audit brief is based upon work done for an audit concerned with whether the European Commission and the member states are expected to achieve the European 2020 broadband objectives.
The 2020 Digital Agenda for Europe anticipated that basic broadband would be provided to all Europeans by 2012, ensuring fast broadband coverage by 2020. Further, it outlined that over 50% of households would subscribe to ultra-fast broadband by 2020.
Studies conducted by the European Commission and the European Investment Bank estimate that around €270bn would be required to achieve the 2020 broadband targets.
The audit, led by Iliana Ivanova, ECA member, is considering whether member states have developed and implemented appropriate strategies to achieve the objectives set by the commission, and how likely it is to achieve such.
Further, it is looking at the use of multiple sources of both EU and national funding for broadband and the degree to which the commission has supported and monitored the member states in achieving broadband objectives.
Auditors have selected a sample of five member states, namely: Ireland, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Italy. They have established the audit scope and approach, as well as identifying the areas of risk to sound financial management.
A report is due to be published in spring 2018.