French calendar for switch-off

As the city of Coulommiers near Paris, is preparing to pilot the first switch-off operation starting next Saturday for three months, Eric Besson has presented the French calendar for digital switchover.

France’s Secretary of State for the digital economy, whose first mission is to allow 100% of French inhabitants access to DTT, said that the national move for digital switchover will start on May 2009. Prior to that, a second test will take place in the city of Kaysersberg, Alsace.

At the end of 2009, the Cherbourg area will start its digital switchover, followed by the whole Western and Eastern regions.

To promote the switch-off among French people, Eric Besson added that €218 million would be invested in the next three years, while an additional €100 million would be assigned to send “digital ambassadors”, helping the poorest families. A further €120 million should come for networks TF1, France 2, France 3, Canal+, M6 and Arte.