Germany’s Federal Ministry for Digital Affairs and Transport has presented its Gigabit Strategy to industry stakeholders, with a view to achieving widespread fibre-optic networks and the latest mobile communications standard for wherever people live, work and travel by 2030. The strategy outlines a number of key goals, including the supply of at least half of all German households and businesses with fibre-to-the-home/building (FTTH/B) networks by the end of 2025 and better mobile phone coverage on railway lines. It proposes that building and site permits are simplified, with the possibility of an early start of construction (for the erection of mobile phone masts) before the building permit is granted, the reduction of the separation distances provided for cell towers and a permit waiver for mobile towers and modifications to existing cell towers. It aims to increase acceptance of microtrenching and above-ground laying techniques, which lay fibre-optic cables faster and with less capacity, among municipalities and companies in the construction industry. The Ministry states it is also adapting its funding process and making the subsidy approval process faster and more digital.
In order to track the implementation of the gigabit strategy, the Ministry is creating a new federal state secretary committee, which will meet at least four times a year to review the implementation of the gigabit strategy and, where necessary, make adjustments and provide assistance. In addition, it is establishing an institutionalised industry dialogue in order to improve cooperation between the state and the market in accelerating the expansion.
The strategy is currently being formulated and is set to be presented to the Cabinet for final approval before the end of the summer.