Spain’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation has announced that a total of EUR 500 million of state funds will be allocated to the deployment of 5G technology in rural parts of the country. Under the latest tender in the government’s ‘Universalisation of Digital Infrastructures for Cohesion’ (UNICO) programme, the funds will be made available for the rollout of networks in towns with less than 10,000 inhabitants. 

The aim of the Unico-5G Active Networks programme is to install necessary active and passive equipment and, where appropriate, additional backhaul infrastructure for the provision of 5G SA (stand alone) services with a view to guaranteeing territorial cohesion through universal connectivity, said the ministry.

It added that the measures will also pave the way for the digital transformation of economic sectors such as agriculture, rural tourism, surveillance of critical infrastructures such as dams and power plants, telemedicine and tele-education.

The funds will be allocated to operators with rights to use frequencies in the 5G bands to encourage them to deploy the technology in smaller municipalities and the deadline for completing the projects has been set at 30 June 2025.

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