Two broadband providers have submitted their proposals in an attempt to win the National Broadband Plan tender.
The Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment confirmed that Eircom Limited and the Granahan McCourt, enet, SSE, John Laing Group plc consortium were the only two providers that submitted proposals by the deadline, which was noon on Tuesday.
The move has been described as a “significant milestone” by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten.
“Everyone in the world is looking at what we are doing here because just like we were the first country to bring electricity to every home, we will be the first to bring high-speed broadband to every single home and every single business in the country. We will be the first country to do this,” he said.
The procurement process
This procurement process will select a bidder, or bidders, who will roll out a high-speed broadband network to remote rural areas not served by commercial operators.
The successful bidder or bidders will build, maintain and operate this State intervention network for the next 25 years.
Earlier on Tuesday, SIRO, the ESB-Vodafone joint venture, announced that it was withdrawing from the procurement process to focus its efforts on delivering high-speed broadband to 500,000 homes and businesses across 51 towns in Ireland.
This investment is valued at €450m.