The Albanian government is using capacity from satellite operator Eutelsat to connect 850 post offices, schools and local government offices in rural areas to the internet.
The scheme falls under the government’s Digital Age of Communications Agenda to provide free public internet access to Albanian citizens.
Eutelsat’s Skylogic affiliate has teamed up with its partner in Albania, Tring Communications, to equip schools and post offices with the Tooway broadband service powered by the KA-SAT satellite. The first of a total 1,000 access points are currently being deployed, using an 8Mbps satellite service.
Albania’s prime minister, Sali Berisha, said: “We have a very special terrain in our country and it is important that our villages, towns and cities do not suffer and are not discriminated against because the private sector does not wish to invest in a broadband infrastructure in these difficult or remote areas. By licensing private companies to build their own networks, the government has expanded the broadband infrastructure. The last mile can now be completed by the public sector or in partnership with the private sector. It can also be assigned to the private sector by the Albanian Postal Service. As a result, we will very soon have more than 1,000 free internet access points throughout Albania.”