At the European Union level, the telecommunications sector was regulated until 2021 by four directives for almost 20 years, which together were known as the EU Telecommunications Framework. These four directives were consolidated and recast in 2018 in a single directive known as the European Electronic Communications Code (“EECC”).

The EU Commission established the Connecting Europe Facility as a key EU funding instrument to promote growth, jobs and competitiveness through infrastructure investment at European level. The digital part of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF Digital) supports and catalyses both public and private investments in digital connectivity infrastructures between 2021 and 2027.

Under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF Digital) programme, as of January 2024, a total budget of €252 million has been allocated among projects for the deployment of 5G infrastructure for local communities and along major European transport corridors, as well as for the deployment of submarine cables, improving the security and resilience of backbone networks within and to the EU. The EU Commission has signed grant agreements with 37 projects, including subsea cable projects such as MedusaEllaLinkPisces, etc.

In February 2024, the European Commission published a White Paper - How to master Europe’s digital infrastructure needs and issued the Recommendation on the Security and Resilience of Submarine Cable Infrastructuresa, including a set of actions at member states and EU level to improve submarine cable security and resilience, through a better coordination across the EU, both in terms of governance and funding.