(Adds details on investment plans for rural Spain)
MADRID, Dec 1 (Reuters) - Spain will invest 4.3 billion euros ($5.15 billion) on deploying next-generation 5G telecoms technology and extending broadband coverage by 2025, the government said on Tuesday.
A total of 883 million euros is already in next year’s budget, which parliament is set to approve in the coming weeks and includes investments to extend broadband to rural areas.
“The goal is that everyone, regardless of where they live, enjoys the benefits of these advances in connectivity under a plan which is particularly relevant for rural Spain”,” Maria Jesus Montero, a government spokeswoman, said after a weekly cabinet meeting.
Spain also expects companies will invest around 24 billion euros on 5G technology in the country by 2025, Montero added.
Operators across the world are activating networks that can offer super-fast download speeds and eventually connect billions of devices to help run homes, offices, factories and cities.
Spain’s 5G rollout would require 6 billion euros in infrastructure investment, the head of domestic market leader Telefonica’s Spanish business said last week.
Industry body GSMA estimates telecoms operators worldwide will spend 78% of a projected $1.14 trillion in capital expenditure over the next five years on 5G. ($1 = 0.8356 euros) (Reporting by Emma Pinedo; Additional reporting by Isla Binnie; Editing by Inti Landauro, Louise Heavens and Alexander Smith)
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