One third remain ‘digitally excluded’ in Poland

One third remain ‘digitally excluded’ in Poland

Despite an improving IT infrastructure, as many as one third of Poles do not use the internet at all. Data published by the EU’s statistics office Eurostat shows that only 63 percent of Poles use the internet and only 64 percent use computers.

Unlike in other EU countries, the percentage of ‘digitally excluded’ in Poland have not changed over the past three years. Two thirds of those who do not have internet access at home say that they do not need it. Thirty six percent, mostly people over the age of 55, say they do not have the necessary skills.The numbers of Poles using the internet remains low in comparison with other EU nations despite accessibility to the web is increasing. The fibre optic network in Poland is growing faster than expected, giving access to a high-speed internet connection to more areas of the country, a report from the Electronic Communications Office (UKE) shows.

UKE spokesperson Dawid Piekarz told Polish Radio that in all Polish cities with at least 100,000 inhabitants there were at least ten broadband internet providers in 2013, making each of them a highly competitive market. There are at least three providers in 240 smaller towns and 100 of the smallest towns and villages.

In only 30 percent of the smallest villages there is no internet provider at all. Last year saw the construction of 7,100 kilometres of new fibre optic networks, even though only 5,300 kilometres were originally planned, the UKE report also said. Total outlays on the construction of the networks amounted to more than 350 million zloty (83.3 million euro), with 53 million zloty (12.6 million euro) coming from EU funds. (kw/pg)

Photo: EPA/MAURITZ ANTIN

Categories: News in English

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