Crunch Time for Europe

2:00 PM -- It's crunch time. Anyone with half a brain can see that if Europe is to rival other regions of the world in terms of attracting and retaining business, and propagating economic growth, it has to have a first-class broadband infrastructure. Industrial health will depend on this.

And while there are pockets of fiber access developments around Europe, the region just doesn't have the collective will, or means, to shift up a few gears from the slow lane to the super-fast lane. (See Report: EMEA Set for FTTH Surge and Asia, Europe Dominate FTTH Elite.)

That's why the next few months, and the decisions to be made by the European Union's Council of Ministers and the members of the European Parliament, are going to be absolutely vital to the region's prosperity.

Check out this excellent column by Heavy Reading chief analyst Graham "I'd like to live in France because it's got really good broadband" Finnie, and then take a peek at these announcements -- MEPs Vote for Change and EC Updates on New Rules -- to get up to speed with developments.

The big concern I have is that a lot now depends on the voting whims of politicians, and the ability of a large regional bureaucratic organization to implement any resulting proposals -- not a scenario that instantly fills me with confidence.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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