Cyprus has the second lowest coverage of very high-capacity fixed connections (VHCN) in the EU, after Greece, information released by Eurostat on Monday showed.
Fast internet connectivity in Cyprus stood at 41 per cent in 2021, compared to an average of 70 per cent in the EU as a whole.
The figures published by Eurostat concern the extent to which the European Commission’s target for increased internet connectivity in all EU households and 5G network coverage for all residential areas by 2030 has progressed.
According to Eurostat, significant progress has been made in the deployment of fixed very high-capacity connections (VHCN) across the European Union.
Very high-capacity connections are defined by Eurostat as fibreoptic connections or other networks offering similar broadband services.
Coverage in both the EU and Cyprus improved compared to 2013, when it stood at 16 per cent in the EU and zero in Cyprus. In Cyprus the coverage with fast internet started according to the data to develop in 2018 (0.5 per cent), 2019 (10 per cent) and 2020 (26 per cent).
Eurostat records an improvement across Europe and in relation to connectivity in the most sparsely populated areas (defined as areas with less than 100 inhabitants per square kilometre). Between 2013 and 2021, the percentage of households in sparsely populated areas with VHCN connections increased from 4 per cent to 37 per cent.
In Cyprus, the connectivity rate in sparsely populated areas in 2021 was 22.4 per cent, marking an increase compared to the first year in which coverage is recorded, 2019 (16.6 per cent), and compared to 2020 (19.5 per cent)
Malta is the only member state to record 100 per cent universal coverage with VHCN connections, followed by Luxembourg (96 per cent), Denmark (95 per cent) and Spain (94 per cent).
The lowest percentage of connections were recorded in Greece (20 per cent), Cyprus (41 per cent) and Italy (44 per cent).
In terms of coverage of sparsely populated areas, Malta again recorded 100 per cent coverage, followed by Luxembourg, Denmark and the Netherlands (79 per cent for all three).
The lowest coverage in sparsely populated areas was recorded in Greece where there is zero coverage, the Czech Republic (7 per cent) and Finland (12 per cent).