Written answers

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Department of Rural and Community Development

Telecommunications Infrastructure

Photo of Aindrias MoynihanAindrias Moynihan (Cork North West, Fianna Fail)
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24. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development the position of the sub-group between his Department and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment which is examining the feasibility of using State and publicly owned assets for the deployment of telecommunications infrastructure; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43816/19]

Photo of Seán CanneySeán Canney (Galway East, Independent)
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In 2018, a Working Group of the Mobile Phone and Broadband Taskforce was established to explore the feasibility of developing a standardised policy for accessing and utilising State assets for the deployment of telecommunications infrastructure. 

The Taskforce noted in its original 2016 Report that the State is the largest owner of land and property assets in the country.  The opportunity was recognised to use these assets to house telecommunications infrastructure and improve services. 

The Working Group met on a number of occasions in 2018 and formed the view that a Government Policy Statement on the Strategic Importance of Facilitating Telecommunications Access to State and Publicly Owned Assets would be an important step to underpin the proposal to make better use of State assets for telecoms infrastructure.

Among the factors taken into account by the Working Group during the course of its considerations are developments at EU level to make State and publicly owned assets available for such purposes.

Work is ongoing in relation to development of the draft Policy Statement, which is expected to be formally approved and published over the coming months.


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