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Only half of German companies have fixed broadband connection

Staff Writer |
Only half of all German companies had fast access to internet in 2018, the German Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) announced.

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Only 51 percent of German companies had a fixed broadband connection with a contractually agreed data transmission rate of at least 30 megabits per second (Mbps), according to Destatis.

"In times when industry 4.0 is an important competitive factor, these figures are alarming", economist for industrial organization and competition Barbara Engels of the German Economic Institute (IW) commented.

While companies in other European countries such as the Netherlands with 70 percent and Portugal with 69 percent have better access to fast internet, Germany with 51 percent was only slightly above the European average of 48 percent.

Compared to the last year, the number of German companies with high-speed internet rose by 9 percentage points in 2018 but still trails far behind frontrunners Sweden and Denmark where 75 percent of companies enjoy broadband connections.

Last year, the German government approved a bill to create a special fund "digital infrastructure" with an initial start-up volume of 2.4 billion euros (2.7 billion U.S. dollars) amongst others with the objective of promotion of expansion of internet access in Germany.

"Seventy percent of the funds from the special fund are available for the gigabit network expansion", parliamentary state secretary at the federal ministry of transport and digital infrastructure, Steffen Bilger said.

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