According to the BBC the European Commission will propose spending over $9 billion on broadband access in rural areas. Ambitious speed goals have been set by the Commission, with all European households having access to at least 30 Mbps by 2020, and 50% of the population with 100 Mbps. President Obama has set a goal for 100 million Americans to have access to 100 Mbps broadband by 2020 as part of the roll-out of the National Broadband Plan.
The money would come from a fund called the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), and would combine the market for all broadband services - including telemedicine, cybersecurity, and intelligent energy networks.
Like the United States, the European Commission seeks to invest more money into rural broadband projects. Broadband providers are reluctant to invest in rural areas because of the limited return on investment in sparsely populated areas. Economic benefits were touted in the announcement - including the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs. The latest funds pledged for broadband projects comes on the heels of an $84.5 million (£53.5 million) in Cornwall, and $18.5 million (£29.2 million) for a project in Northern Island.
In 2009 President Obama signed the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA), which included $7.2 billion for broadband projects around the country.