It would seem that
- Based on a 25% takeup within 3 years
- 45% takeup within 10 years
- 60% takeup at peak, 15-20 years hence.
**The National Broadband Plan will cost the taxpayer over €2.5bn in taxpayer subsidies by the time the contract expires in 25 or 30 years time. **
At least these are the numbers shared with me today. Of the €2.5bn a full €1.1bn will be payable by 2022 and the rest as ‘availability payments’ over the lifetime of the contract. You could therefore argue that €1.1bn will be capital expenditure and €1.4bn will be current expenditure over 20 years. The current expenditure is frontloaded into the 2020s too.
Lest anyone query the takeup, the existing eir rural fibre rollout which focuses on more affluent rural areas and which now passes around 200,000 premises has a takeup of around 20% and a blended availability of 1 year (IE the average premises passed by this network has been able to order for a nominal year, some for longer and some more recently).
In my area it is around 30% takeup but you cannot order it off Vodafone or Sky who have a lot of the home broadband market nowadays and I do have 4g or 3g options from all mobile providers where I am. Many households will stay with mobile because it is very cheap, even if it is basically unusable in the evening and weekends when the students are home.
I personally don’t think the state should commit to anything other than the €1.1bn build cost out to 2022 and after that Denis O’Brien and his mates in the bidding consortium had better carry their own risk if they are in any way competent at all.