The European Commission (EC) has referred the Netherlands and Bulgaria to the Court of Justice of the EU for delays in transposing the Broadband Cost Reduction Directive (Directive 2014/61/EU). EU Member States were obliged to transpose the Directive into national law by 1 January 2016. The Commission is calling on the Court to impose financial penalties: for the Netherlands EUR87,091 (USD107,936) per day, and for Bulgaria EUR22,226 per day.
The Broadband Cost Reduction Directive aims to incentivise cooperation across sectors and exploit synergies (e.g. between telecoms, energy, water and transport sectors) to the benefit of EU citizens by creating the conditions for more efficient deployment of new infrastructure. Civil engineering, such as the digging-up of roads, accounts for up to 80% of the cost of deploying high speed broadband networks, the EC says.
In the same decision (issued 25 January 2018) the Commission closed cases against Austria and Luxembourg, both of which have belatedly completed transposition of the Directive.