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Most Brazilian homes lack broadband access

Telecoms agency attempts to improve the situation but bureaucracy remains a significant hurdle
Written by Angelica Mari, Contributing Writer

Some 75 percent of Brazilian households still lack broadband access, according to the National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel).

Increased access to telecommunications services will be a key priority at Anatel, according to its new president, Juarez Quadros, who says the percentage is due to the lack of coverage of services in more remote areas of large cities.

The challenge, according to Quadros, is to achieve the goal of universal access to broadband in Brazil.

"There are still many areas without access to technologies such as mobile and fixed telephony, broadband, or even 3G and 4G connectivity. We need to bring access to telecommunications to every corner of Brazil," Quadros told reporters at the event on Monday, which marked his first day on the job.

Another key underlying issue behind the lack of broadband across Brazil - where connectivity is concentrated in large urban centers such as São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro - is the bureaucracy related to the relationship between operators and the government.

According to Quadros, there is a need to to simplify and facilitate the granting of permits to deploy networks.

"We need the modernization of legislation so that services can be provided more quickly and at a high quality standard," he said.

The executive added that proposed legislation that is due to be voted by Brazil's lower house of Congress will address the issue of grants.

According to separate research from the Brazilian Internet Steering Committee (CGI.br) some 47 percent of all Brazilians aged 10 or older use their mobile phones to access the Internet rather than fixed broadband.

But the South East region of Brazil concentrates 60 percent of the mobile Internet users. Conversely, the North, where the Amazon is located, has only 35 percent of all users.

The Brazilian telecommunications market is the fifth largest in the world and accounts for 4 percent of the country's GDP.

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