The first municipalities to receive EU vouchers to set up Wi-Fi hotspots in public spaces

Date

2018 12 14

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Nineteen Lithuanian municipalities, fast enough to respond to the first WiFi4EU call of proposals of the European Commission, will be able to receive vouchers worth 15 thousand euros to set up Wi-Fi hotspots in public spaces.

“The internet access will be installed in squares, parks, libraries, museums and other public spaces selected by municipalities. The Wi-Fi hotspots will be free of charge and available for three years at least”, – said Mr. Rokas Masiulis, Minister of Transport and Communications.

The cities of Vilnius, Šiauliai, Alytus and 16 more regional municipalities, who have submitted applications, will be able to use the European Union’s (EU) funds to arrange free access to Wi-Fi connectivity in public spaces.

The first WiFi4EU call for proposals, which ran on 7-9 November, proved to be very popular, with over 13000 applications from all participating countries. The opportunity to submit applications was announced in advance. Municipalities were selected on a "first-come, first-served" basis. In total 2800 EU municipalities will be granted vouchers of 15 thousand euros in this stage. The budget of 42 million euros is planned.

The European Commission plans to arrange three more such calls in the next two years. The first should be launched in the beginning of the year 2019. In total some 8000 municipalities in the EU will be able to use this opportunity until 2020. The budget of 120 million euros will be distributed among them.

Improving connectivity in the EU is a key part of the Digital Single Market strategy.