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New development in the fibre world

CMS Digitalbytes

22 July 2019

And so just a few days after BT announced that it would be ready to cut dividend to meet its commitment to fibre connection, it is up to Liberty Global and Virgin Media to announce their move to build a new fibre network.

This is welcome news as the country is lagging behind its European neighbours with so little of the territory covered, but it is unclear which part of the territory will these efforts focus on.&

Boris Johnson, the Tory leader candidate, announced his wish for a new earlier governmanetal target of 2025 for full fibre in the UK. 2033 was already an ambitious target. But it is the sign of how much of a political need this is.

Ensuring the countries is fit for the increasing digitalisation of all businesses and for the upgrade to 5G means the need for the fullest possible coverage. It is the private sector which is leading this build. With infrastructure funds now very focused on this new class of infrastructure assets, there is a sense of real momentum in investment.

This is costly and the numbers are challenging in rural areas especially, where necessity seems to be driving innovation; but there are also reports of self building out of frustration (https://www.ft.com/content/32f013fc-91e1-11e9-aea1-2b1d33ac3271).

There is therefore a need for governmental and regulatory support and this will certainly keep who will succeed to Sharon White as head of OFCOM busy.

Liberty Global is preparing to launch a huge expansion of its Virgin Media network in Britain by forming a new company backed by infrastructure funds to build high-speed full-fibre lines outside of urban areas.

The content above was originally posted on CMS Digitalbytes - CMS lawyers sharing comment and commentary on all things tech.

Authors

Anne Chitan
Anne Chitan
Partner
London