Digital infrastructure strategy: Turning Finland into the world leader in communications networks
The Digital infrastructure strategy prepared at the Ministry of Transport and Communications has been published. According to the strategy, the digital infrastructure promotes competitiveness and wellbeing by enabling the utilisation of, for example, data economy and artificial intelligence in both the private and public services.
The strategy determines objectives for the development of the digital infrastructure in Finland by 2025 as well as the methods for achieving this objective. They cover both the promotion of wireless connections and the construction of fixed connections. The strategy also deals with other technologies supplementing the data communications infrastructure.
“Our aim is to be the leading country in communications networks. The digital infrastructure must enable living, working and entrepreneurship across Finland. The needs of people, businesses and industry have been taken into consideration in the aims and measures of the strategy,” says Minister of Transport and Communications Anne Berner.
High-speed communications networks form the foundation of modern society and are a prerequisite for digitalisation. The strategy responds to global trends such as the growing role of artificial intelligence, data economy, automation, robotisation, internet of things and virtual reality in future applications and services. Also the development of autonomous transport on land, sea and air places high requirements for digital data and communications connections.
Finland aims for the development of communications connections in accordance with the objectives of the European Commission, at the minimum. By 2025 all households should have access to at least 100 Mbit/s connections. It should be possible to increase the speed of the connection to one gigabyte per second.
An important element in promoting the spread of high-speed broadband is appropriate use of radio spectrum. In Europe, the so-called 3.5 GHz (3400–3800 MHz) and 26 GHz spectrum (24.25–27.5 GHz) have been recognised as essential spectrum for the construction of 5G networks.
In Finland, the entire 3.5 GHz spectrum will be taken into national use for wireless broadband from the beginning of 2019, The spectrum of 26 GHz will also be taken into use for wireless broadband so that the user rights for the entire spectrum will be issued in spring 2020, but the uppermost part of the spectrum will be issued by means of radio licences of the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority for a fixed term and for limited, shared use already from the beginning of this year.
Cost-efficient construction of optical fibre networks will be facilitated by streamlining the regulation on the placement of telecommunications cables. The permit procedure related to the placement of cables will be developed in connection with the drafting of the Highways Act.
Päivi Antikainen, Director of Unit, tel. +358 50 382 7101, Twitter @PaiviAntikainen
Katariina Vuorela, Senior Officer, tel. +358 295 34 2029, Twitter @vuorelakata