Italy to use EUR6.7bn EU funds on broadband expansion

14 Apr 2021

The Italian government is to spend EUR6.7 billion (USD8 billion) in European recovery funds on the expansion of its broadband networks, up 60% on its previous target. According to a report from Reuters citing two sources close to the matter, the new government of Mario Draghi, which came to power in February, is revising a national Recovery and Resilience Plan (RRP).

Italy is entitled to EUR206 billion from EU funds which have been set aside to help the nations hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Rome now plans to raise the amount spent on broadband, 5G and satellite infrastructure to EUR6.7 billion from EUR4.2 billion earmarked in January by the previous government. The total funds for boosting digitalisation amount to some EUR49 billion, up from a previous EUR46.3 billion, including investments in public administration and grants for small and medium-sized companies, one of the sources added. In the EU’s 2019 Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), Italy ranked fourth from last in terms of digital competitiveness.