The U.K. government could be about to get the green light from the European Commission 's competition watchdog for its long-delayed plan to free up £530 million (US$850 million) of state aid for the rollout of rural super-fast broadband, according to a report in the Financial Times (subscription required). Joaquín Almunia, the European competition commissioner, has apparently indicated he is happy for the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) scheme to proceed, though other commissioners have yet to rubber-stamp the decision. (See UK Govt Allocates Broadband Funding and BT Builds FTTX With Govnt Funds.)
QTel has virtually doubled its stake in Kuwait's Wataniya Telecom , at a cost of around 519.1 million Kuwaiti dinars ($1.8 billion), reports Reuters. The move will give QTel more of a toehold in the burgeoning markets of Algeria and Tunisia, says the report.
The residents of a new housing project in Derwenthorpe, a village near the historic city of York in the north of England, are to enjoy 1Gbit/s broadband, advanced television services via Integrated Reception Systems (IRS), as well as VoIP services, all courtesy of Calix Inc. (NYSE: CALX) and its E7-2 Ethernet Service Access Platform. The 540-home development is being created by the Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust at a cost of £40 million ($64 million). (See Calix Lands Small Deal in UK.)