2019 – the third year of the Broadband Competence Offices (BCO) Network initiative – has been a great year in terms of cross-BCO engagement and exchange. The Network is growing stronger and more connected, with Member States and regions helping one another to overcome broadband deployment challenges. BCOs are also increasingly working with the European Commission to give input and shape the future of EU broadband policy and funding. Explore the 2019 activities of the European Broadband Competence Offices Network in this end of year report.

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Download the report to explore the BCO Network in 2019, or read on for some of the highlights of the year.

In 2019, BCO Network members and the European Commission worked together on the challenges and opportunities of broadband deployment with a focus on:

  • Step change and procurement
  • Demand-side measures
  • Socio-economic drivers
  • 5G
  • Mapping
  • Investment models for rural areas
  • State aid

BCOs themselves increasingly drove the discussions, leading thematic working groups and encouraging a growth in regional participation and cross-border collaboration, extending even to the neighbouring countries of the Western Balkans and Norway.

Through the year’s training sessions, thematic group meetings and annual conference, BCOs, experts and European Commission officials brought greater clarity to the legal, technological and financial concerns of broadband planning and implementation. With a view to reaching the Gigabit Society objectives, dialogue in 2019 laid particular emphasis on State aid and rural deployment.

2019 also saw the launch of a series of workshops dedicated to the upcoming new Connecting Europe Facility Digital programme (CEF2 Digital). These workshops were organised across different Member States by their national BCOs in collaboration with the European Commission.

As part of the BCO Network’s work to promote awareness of EU broadband funding and policy as well as good practices in broadband projects, a series of videos, articles and publications were produced in 2019, all accessible through the BCO Network portal.

Complementing this are the European Commission’s database of broadband good practice projects; the annual European Broadband Awards, which recognise innovative ways of achieving the Gigabit Society objectives.

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