PNBL slated to reach 4mn households in southern region next year

- Thursday, November 24, 2011

PNBL slated to reach 4mn households in southern region next year

The number of Brazilian households served in the south region by national broadband plan PNBL will reach 4mn in 2012, the communications ministry predicted.

The ministry estimates that 142 municipalities in the region - comprised of Paraná, Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul states - will be served by the program by then.

By 2017, the government expects to be serving 91.25% of the south region's municipalities. Countrywide, the goal is to reach 4,424 municipalities - or 78.2% of the country's total - by 2017, representing 90.2% of Brazil's population.

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According to Caio Bonilha, president of state-run Telebrás - the telco in charge of PNBL coordination and infrastructure deployment - 60% of the 639 licensed internet service providers (ISPs) of the south region have expressed their intention to join the PNBL.

The partnership recently signed by Telebrás and state controlled energy company Eletrobrás' subsidiary for the south region, Eletrosul, will be "critical" to cover municipalities, as it will enable the sharing of networks, Bonilha said.