France aims to invest nearly €1.7 billion in its 5G market, Industry Minister Agnès Pannier-Runacher and Secretary of State for Digital Cédric O announced on Tuesday morning (6 July) while presenting the country’s 5G and future telecommunications strategy that is eyeing a 5G market worth €15 billion by 2025. EURACTIV France reports.
“We have taken the time to remove the doubts (…) and now we must accelerate,” Agnès Pannier-Runacher announced at the start of a presentation of the “national strategy on 5G and future telecommunications network technologies”.
To contribute to its 2025 strategy of reaching a 5G market worth €15 billion, the government announced €480 million in public funding to support priority projects between now and 2022. By 2025, the funding should grow to €735 million.
This means that together with private investments, more than €1.7 billion should be mobilised for the telecommunications sector in the coming years.
During the presentation, Panier-Runacher outlined the opportunities 5G has to offer to make sectors like the automotive, hospitality and agriculture sectors more competitive, also noting that European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen had “made 5G one of her priorities”.
According to Panier-Runacher, “capitalising on our know-how”, developing research and development and “supporting the historic European equipment manufacturers” like Nokia and Ericsson are at stake in what she termed a “lever for industrial recovery”.
The Secretary of State for Digital, Cédric O, said that France aims to “build a sovereign solution for business networks by 2022”.
The strategy also plans to contribute to the development of technological bricks – links in the chain – that are sovereign to obtain networks that guarantee a high level of security and reliability and to bolster Franco-German cooperation on the subject. Most of the public funding or €360 million will go towards this.
A positive economic impact
France will also launch a mission on 5G for the industry and appoint a qualified person to head it in September, the secretary of state also announced.
The aim of the mission is to strengthen synergies between the various players. It could also consider the exclusive allocation of certain 5G frequencies to industrial players. “The issue is on the table,” O added.
Developing the 5G sector will likely have a positive impact on the economy, particularly as 5G will undoubtedly spill over to other industries.
France’s new strategy is expected to create 20,000 new jobs by 2025, the government announced, while the European Commission estimated in a 2016 study that exploiting 5G to its fullest potential could lead to more than €113 billion in savings each year.
[Edited by Zoran Radosavljevic]