Eir’s baffling broadband plan offer raises suspicions of sabotage

Disjuncture between firm’s inside-the-process cost of €2.75bn and new claim is jarring

Eir CEO Carolan Lennon and Eir’s director of regulatory and public policy Gary Healy, before going in front of an Oireachtas committee. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Eir CEO Carolan Lennon and Eir’s director of regulatory and public policy Gary Healy, before going in front of an Oireachtas committee. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Is Eir attempting to torpedo the National Broadband Plan (NBP)? Ireland’s largest telco threw the process into chaos last month, claiming it could do the job for less than €1 billion, roughly a third of what the Government intends to pay US businessman David McCourt, its preferred bidder for the project.

The company claims the lower price tag could be achieved if the Government’s contract, littered as it is with onerous legal provisions, financial clawbacks and monopoly-busting caveats, is watered down.

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