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Hellas Sat deal to bring broadband to rural areas.

THE COMMUNICATIONS Ministry and satellite company Hellas Sat have finalised a deal to provide rural areas with broadband internet and digital television services.

According to the head of the Electronic Communications Department, Stelios Chimonas, the state will be given e1/43.5 million, as well as e1/44.3 million worth of cable services.

The ministry plans to use the services to connect isolated areas and schools with broadband internet, expand the transmission for CyBC programmes and other specialised services.

Hellas Sat director Christodoulos Protopapas yesterday told Phileleftheros newspaper that the agreement would contribute to government efforts to bridge the digital gap in Cyprus, as the satellite company has done in Greece as well as 30 other counties where it is active.

The proposed services include cable telecommunications for security bodies and government services and provide wireless cable internet in communities where it is impossible to use the land web.

The deal has been under discussion for years.

In late October, when Communications Minister Nikos Nikolaides presented his ministry's annual budget, he said one of his main objectives was to improve broadband internet and digital television services for rural areas, which he said enjoyed considerably less perks than those living in urban areas.

"There is a digital chasm when it comes to urban and rural areas," Nikolaides told reporters after the session. "Urban areas enjoy much better services, resulting in unfair treatment. Our aim is to offer each Cypriot publican what they are entitled to."

Copyright Cyprus Mail 2008

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Publication:Cyprus Mail (Cyprus)
Date:Dec 25, 2008
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