Government publishes national broadband maps

Ireland broadband map 2016
High-speed broadband provincial coverage as expected by 2016. Source: Dept of Communications

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24 November 2014 | 0

Householders across the country can see when they are due to receive a high-speed broadband connectivity service following the publication of a range of national and regional maps from the Dept of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources.

A consultation on the content of the maps, which closes on 12 February 2015, will ensure that they accurately reflect the extent of planned state investment in high-speed broadband infrastructure. This is necessary to ensure that the State intervention does not compete with commercial provision, as is required under EU state aid guidelines.

Launching the maps and an accompanying consultation document in Doolin, County Clare, Minister for Communications Alex White said: “The delivery of high quality broadband is about ensuring that our citizens in rural Ireland have the same life chances, and the same access to information, culture, ideas, social interaction and opportunity that people in urban areas can enjoy. It’s also about jobs in the rural economy.

“By ensuring access to high quality broadband we will help attract investment and ensure that businesses in rural Ireland can stay in rural Ireland. We will also enable people to live in their local communities and work from home if that works for them. And it’s about families and communities – helping us keep in touch with loved ones, enabling our children to use the internet as a rich learning resource at school and at home, and giving people rapid access to a full range of public services.”

The map shows that of the 2.3 million premises in the Republic of Ireland, commercial telecoms industry plan on delivering high-speed broadband access to 1.6 million homes and businesses – 68% of the premises in the state – by the end of 2016. The remaining 600,000 homes and 100,000 businesses will require direct State intervention.

The next phase of the intervention strategy would be completed by summer 2015, after which the procurement phase of the project would begin.

“With today’s publication of a high-speed broadband national coverage map – along with a consultation document – we have moved a significant step closer to closing the digital divide and meeting our commitment to the rural communities of Ireland,” the Minister said.

The map can be accessed at www.broadband.gov.ie.

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