March 20, 2018 Internet & Press

Free internet for thousands of Europeans!

The European Commission has launched the WiFi4EU Internet Portal and calls on local self-government units across Europe to apply for the first bid for projects that will be open in mid-May. Municipalities and cities are competing for EU funding of building free wireless internet hotspots in public spaces.

„The WiFi4EU programme will allow thousands of Europeans free Internet access in public places throughout the EU. This is an important step towards achieving a unique digital market, and it is an opportunity for all Croatian municipalities and cities to get money from EU funds through a simple procedure and facilitate access to the internet for tourists and citizens!", said Tonino Picula, who has been intensively communicating the WiFi4EU program to local self-government units in Croatia in recent months. 

The WiFi4EU programme offers vouchers worth €15,000 for municipalities to set up Wi-Fi hotspots in public spaces, including libraries, museums, public parks, squares. The WiFi4EU initiative aims at connecting "every European village and every city with free wireless internet access around the main centres of public life by 2020." 

€120 million is available from the EU budget until 2020 to fund equipment for public free Wi-Fi services in up to 8,000 municipalities in all Member States as well as Norway and Iceland

Municipalities can use the WiFi4EU vouchers to purchase and install Wi-Fi equipment (wireless access points) in their chosen centres of local public life. Costs for maintaining the network will be covered by the municipality. Those who already have public wireless access points can apply for their upgrade.

How to apply for a WiFi4EU voucher?

Registration phase: As of 20 March 2018, municipalities should sign up on the portal;

Application phase: In mid-May 2018, the first call will be launched and registered municipalities can apply for a first lot of 1,000 WiFi4EU vouchers (€15,000 each). The vouchers will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis;

Assignment phase: ensuring a geographic balance, the Commission will announce the 1,000 municipalities that will receive funding through the first call. Each participating country will receive at least 15 vouchers. In the coming two years, four more WiFi4EU calls will be launched.

Read the whole article on the link.

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