Telecom Italia Chairman Gabriele Galateri and Unione delle Province d’Italia (Union of Italian Provinces, or UPI) Chairman Giuseppe Castiglione have signed a memorandum of understanding which acknowledges the key role played by provincial administrations in development policies, most notably communications technology infrastructure. The memorandum of understanding will lead to tangible simplification of broadband network construction procedures, pursuant to Law no. 133 of 2008.
The memorandum of understanding comes in the wake of a memorandum signed in February 2010 by the UPI and the Ministry of Economic Development -- Communications Department. This new memorandum fosters the use of new non-invasive digging techniques in Italy's provinces to reduce environmental impact and work costs for building broadband service enhancing telecommunications networks.
The memorandum promotes what are known as "mini trenches". Using groundbreaking techniques and tools, this method reduces environmental impact in terms of inconveniencing for citizens and local government (by 80%), workplace injuries (by 67%), and the length of time it takes to build telecommunications infrastructure (by 80%) by using excavations just a few centimetres wide and just 30 cm deep.
All of this is possible thanks to UPI and Telecom Italia's commitment and to the "convention model" leveraged in the protocol. Province-level administrations will be able to enter into ad hoc agreements with Telecom Italia and other telecommunications carriers that are party to the agreement in order to ensure uniform nationwide application of regulations, terminology and key parameters (such as excavation depth and width), in addition to reducing the time it takes to obtain authorization and carry out the building work under these new terms and conditions.
UPI and Telecom Italia will set up a monitoring board to audit the simplification processes built into the protocol, and provide support and backup to provincial administrations. By exchanging information about local broadband service coverage with Telecom Italia, the board will enable UPI to coordinate work undertaken by provincial administrations to bridge the digital divide.
Telecom Italia has successfully run trials of these excavation techniques in Rome, Turin, part of Sardinia and southern Italy, and is the first telecommunications company to enter this protocol with UPI. Telecom Italia believes that the widespread and harmonious adoption of these new digging techniques will make it possible to improve and enhance network infrastructure while at the same time reducing the time, inconvenience and cost of the work involved.
Rome, 14 May 2010