Orange said that it plans to invest around €2bn through 2015 in fiber optics in very dense areas in France (defined by the French telecommunications regulator ARCEP as zone 1) as well as in other big cities.
The group already invests almost €3bn per annum in its network and infrastructure in order to provide quality services to both its retail and business customers. The telco said that the new program will not effect the amount that it will invest in France, where a large proportion will continue to be allocated to the modernisation and maintenance of its network and service infrastructure.
In very dense areas (zone 1), deployment will resume in the nine agglomerations already covered and in the Paris region. The deployment will also be extended from 2010 to new cities such as Cannes, Montpellier, Orleans, Rennes, Strasbourg and Toulon, the company said.
Orange also plans to invest in dense areas (zone 2) and a test phase will be carried out in Chatou and Oullins before a wider deployment begins.
Orange has signed an agreement with SFR to carry out operational tests in Palaiseau and Bondy with a view to drawing up a co-investment contract. Discussions are also being finalized in order to extend the agreement to free and a third town.
Orange aims to be present in all regions of mainland France, in around 45 agglomerations, by 2012, then in all departments of mainland France and in three overseas departments by 2015.