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WIFI4EU: local authorities can now apply for EU funding to build free networks in public spaces
Local authorities across the EU can from today apply for EU funding to build free wireless internet hotspots in public spaces like libraries, city centres, parks, museums and squares. The scheme – WiFi4EU – offers a voucher of €15 000 (over £13 000) towards the installation costs.
So far over one in five local authorities across Europe has registered their details. Those that have not registered, but wish to apply, can register on this portal.
WiFi4EU-funded networks will be free of charge, free of advertising and free of personal data harvesting. Funding will only be provided to networks that do not duplicate existing free private or public offers with a similar quality in the same public space.
The vouchers will be distributed on a first-come first-served basis, but to ensure geographical balance each participating member state will get at least 15 vouchers in this application round. The scheme has a total budget of €120 million (£105 million) until 2020 which will allow for between 6 and 8 thousand municipalities in total to participate. The vouchers can be redeemed against the purchase of equipment or for installation. The local authorities will cover the cost for maintaining the network and for the internet subscription. They commit to operate the network for at least 3 years.
The deadline for application for this funding round is 16.00 GMT (17.00 CET) on 9 November 2018. In the next two years there will be three more funding rounds, one every six months.
Please note: all amounts expressed in sterling are for information purposes only.