The Italian government has opened a consultation ahead of its third and final tender for contracts to deploy broadband internet networks in so-called ‘white areas’. The contracts, which are being offered by the government agency Infratel, cover unserved and underserved regions in the provinces of Calabria, Puglia and Sardinia. The consultation process calls for telcos to provide details of existing network coverage and any planned works to expand broadband services over the next three years, to ensure there is no overlap between publicly-funded rollouts and the private telco deployments.
Infratel’s first two batches of tenders were both won by Open Fiber, a wholesale network operator set up by Italian utility group Enel. The first stage of state-subsidised contracts covered Abruzzo and Molise, Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Tuscany and Veneto, while the second stage included Piedmont, Valle d’Aosta, Liguria, Friuli Venezia Giulia, Umbria, Marche, Lazio, Campania, Basilicata and Sicily, as well as the autonomous province of Trento.