A Scottish Government investment of £120 million will bring superfast broadband to communities across the Highlands and Islands, Alex Neil said today.
The Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment said the funding will ensure homes and businesses across some of Scotland’s most rural areas could get the benefits of next generation broadband for the very first time.
The Highlands and Islands, with the help of public investment, already has basic broadband provision to around 99 per cent of premises.
This investment will mean Highlands and Islands Enterprise, who are in discussions with BT, can roll out a programme to deliver world class connectivity for the region. This will call for a broad range of technical solutions, for example, by laying underground cables and in some cases, sub-sea cables to connect island communities.
Speaking via the Convention of Highlands and Islands, Mr Neil said: “Scotland’s ambition to deliver world-class digital connectivity by 2020 has received a boost today, with the announcement of £120 million for the Highlands and Islands.
“Everybody in the Highlands and Islands recognises the importance of access to superfast broadband, not just for the future of our local economies but indeed for the future of our children, for our education, our health and every aspect of life in the modern world.
“Highlands and Islands Enterprise, which is currently in discussion with BT, has been a driving force in developing a project to find solutions to the challenges of bringing next generation access to businesses and communities in the region.”
More on this story in Friday’s Northern Times.