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Radio/TV broadcasting alongside mobile and fiber telecoms infrastructure operations are essential services for France’s mainland and overseas population and TDF’s customers. TDF makes every effort to maintain service as usual and strengthen on-site safety measures.

In the current COVID-19 pandemic, TDF has taken extraordinary steps primarily designed to protect and support its staff during the lockdown.

TDF’s services for customers and partners like TV channels, radio stations and telecom operators are especially essential throughout the lockdown period.

TDF has set up a Business Continuity Plan (BCP) to ensure service continuity covering DTT and digital radio broadcasting, telecom infrastructure and optical fiber networks. In its Fort de Romainville surveillance center in Lilas, TDF has revamped staff procedures to protect them while maintaining top quality service. To cope with a surge in internet network demand, DTT services are absolutely vital. DTT is free, available throughout France and people need it to stay informed, particularly in relation to health matters.

TDF continues to boost digital coverage across France by rolling out infrastructure.

Building new fiber and telecom infrastructure is continuing to the extent possible, including in rural areas.

By maintaining infrastructure operations, TDF is gearing up for the return to normal working conditions. Mindful of the public purse, TDF has not tapped into government handouts and has not introduced short-time working measures. The company strives to maximize its operational output.

In mobile telecom infrastructure, 24 masts and rooftops have been delivered to mobile operators since the lockdown began. In Polynesia, 2 masts have been built and 2 others are under construction. TDF plays a core role in expanding coverage to blackspots in France. The Company makes available its existing masts to address general public and operators needs. Furthermore, the Company is engaged in an active mast construction program: in 2019 alone, 300-plus masts were erected.

In the fiber business, TDF continues to build fiber networks to the extent possible in low-density areas of five French départements (counties), namely Val d’Oise, Yvelines, Indre-et-Loire, Loir-et- Cher and Maine-et-Loire. To carry out prioritized end-users connections, the company is teaming up with its ISP partners. Construction drivers and inspectors keep working on site, while strictly adhering to social-distancing guidelines. Operational and maintenance staff continue to work so that facilities, equipment and services stay fully functional, especially those for public services and business services.

To protect staff, customers, suppliers and sub-contractors, TDF has implemented protection and support measures.

Ensuring employees safety is the company’s top priority in an effort to stop the pandemic spreading. All staff, where possible, are home working under a scheme the company implemented several years ago. For on-site staff required to work with a view to safeguarding key operations and services, rules have been established so as to emphasize and enforce government social- distancing guidelines, minimize movements and travel and keep the number of employees working together at sites to the absolute minimum. In a bid to anticipate operations and maintenance requiring more than one employee at a time, TDF has ordered facemasks and already provides anti-bacterial hand-sanitizers and gloves.

The Company supports its employees during the lockdown. To safeguard staff mental health, the company has set up an assistance unit whereby social workers listen to any problems staff may encounter. What is more, all staff are allowed to attend remote medical appointments free of charge. Steps the Company takes to safeguard staff quality of life at work include providing them online sport and yoga lessons as well as advice about looking after children and managing home work. The Company’s Economic and Social Committee has made available a learning platform so that all employees can broaden their knowledge in any field. Lastly, the Company allows employees, who are voluntary firefighters, first aiders and reservists, to serve the community at large during their working hours.

To manage and track all coronavirus-linked issues, the Company has set up a specific coronavirus taskforce, made up of TDF Executive Committee and management committee members. The taskforce meets every day to track developments on an ongoing basis and establishes and oversees an action plan designed to protect staff, stop the virus spreading and safeguard business continuity. Meanwhile, the Executive Committee meets every morning to review the latest developments.

TDF Group CEO Olivier Huart said: “The global COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis of unprecedented seriousness. During the lockdown, we strive to meet the needs of the population and our customers. We fully take on board this social and public responsibility so as to ensure everyone’s safety while also rising to the big challenge to safeguard our business. Our top priority is to protect our staff and to support them during the lockdown. To ensure they stay safe while continuing to work, we have reinforced safety measures at work. This is a critical issue because us continuing to deliver services is especially vital during this lockdown. We are fully mobilized and do our utmost to ensure that all employees can fulfil their duties safely in strict compliance with government guidelines, across all businesses, including DTT and digital radio broadcasting, mobile networks equipment hosting and fiber networks maintenance in rural areas. This crisis will have consequences. TDF is a strategic telecoms player in France. We have managed to make our production facilities a force for good even in the toughest circumstances, so that we constantly contribute to boosting digital coverage across France.”