La battaglia dell’Europa per la banda larga

LONDRA – Tra le tante sfide cui deve far fronte la nuova Commissione europea c’è quella di stabilire come fornire un accesso ultra-rapido a Internet a banda larga a tutti i 500 milioni di residenti dell’Unione europea senza aumentare le tasse o mandare in bancarotta le società di telecomunicazioni d’Europa. Questo imperativo ha portato molti a chiedere maggiori contributi ai giganti di Internet come Google, Netflix e Facebook, che sono frequentemente oggetto di critiche per non essersi impegnati al massimo – e persino accusati di essere “free-rider”, intenti a  saccheggiare gli asset e i mercati europei. Sono giustificate queste critiche?

In una parola: no. La realtà è che le maggiori compagnie di Internet – molte delle quali con sede negli Stati Uniti – stanno già versando miliardi di dollari per stabilire e mantenere le reti e i data center che sono essenziali per il funzionamento di Internet.

Queste società hanno, di fatto, investito direttamente oltre 75 miliardi di euro (100 miliardi di dollari) in infrastrutture per Internet negli ultimi tre anni, con una spesa fino al 10% annuo in questo periodo. Inoltre, hanno partecipato in consorzi che hanno investito oltre 500 milioni di euro creando un cavo a fibra ottica sottomarino trans-Pacifico, che è operativo dal 2010, e un cavo di 8.300 chilometri (5.200 miglia) dall’Asia sud-orientale al Giappone che è stato realizzato l’anno scorso.

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