Access to high speed Internet in the European Union is growing with 80 percent of broadband lines now having download speeds of 2 megabits per second or greater, according to a report published Wednesday by the European Commission.
In July 2009, 24 percent of the EU population had a broadband access line subscription marking a 21.6 percent increase from July 2008, the report found. The research also found a 54 percent increased of mobile broadband penetration since January, which means the EU currently has a penetration rate of 4.2 percent per 100 citizens.
“Vibrant high-speed broadband markets in a competitive single telecoms market are a strategic priority in the European Digital Agenda that is currently being prepared in the Commission. High-speed internet broadband, whether via fibre networks or wireless, is a pre-condition for a strong digital economy in Europe and for European leadership in new technologies and applications,” said EU Telecoms Commissioner Viviane Reding in a statement.
She expects a new and pro-competitive regulatory framework for Europe's telecoms markets to drive the roll-out of high speed internet in member states.
The report found 40 percent of the population in Denmark and the Netherlands have a broadband connection “but growth rates are slowing as they approach saturation.”