Go and Vodafone have reached a "ground-breaking" agreement through which Vodafone will be able to provide internet services over GO's Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) network.

The two companies are expected to finalise technical details concerning the deal over the next six months. 

In a statement, the Malta Communications Authority said this was a pioneering move, for its extent and for the efficiency by which the parties had reached an agreement.

Consumers, the MCA said, should benefit from more competitive pricing and better quality services due to faster fixed broadband from both service providers. A competitive environment would continue to flourish as the respective operators would provide different services based on their unique business strategies.

The MCA noted that the sharing of ready-built infrastructure meant that less intervention in Malta’s urban and rural landscape.

The agreement also has the potential to give further impetus, both to drive additional coverage of FTTH in Malta, as well as to the take-up by consumers and business of ultra-fast internet services.

The MCA said it had defined the regulatory requirements to ensure the deal was  in line with EU norms, facilitated a successful outcome to the negotiations, and would continue to ensure the effective development of this venture.

We've been investing millions - GO

In a separate statement, GO said the agreement it signed would enable operators which did not have their own network to make use of its FTTH network to offer fixed broadband services, powered by GO’s fibre network, to their respective subscribers.

“GO has been investing millions every year to ensure a robust telecommunications infrastructure that can service the increased demand and to support Malta and its growing economy," GO’s CEO Nikhil Patil said.

Mr Patil remarked that not all operators had the will or propensity to invest in Malta the way GO had been investing in FTTH across the islands over the past years.

One must also not forget the regulatory obligations currently being imposed on GO, which made it easier for other operators to ride on its existing infrastructures, he said.

Mr Patil assured GO shareholders that the company was keeping its investment options under constant review and would adhere to its duty to invest only when sustainable rates of return were foreseeable.


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