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‘Broadband investment must prioritise need’– O’Neill

25 April, 2018 - by Michelle O'Neill

Areas with the worst provision must be prioritised within a £150m investment to improve broadband coverage, Sinn Féin Vice President Michelle O’Neill has said.

Michelle O’Neill was commenting after it was confirmed that the Department for the Economy will be developing its plans for the investment in consultation with local parties and other stakeholders.

“Areas with the worst access to broadband should be prioritised,” she said.

“These are primarily rural areas such as Fermanagh, Omagh and Mid-Ulster which have the highest proportion of homes and businesses without access to superfast broadband.

“Prioritising these areas would meet objective need, promote equality between urban and rural communities, and ensure regionally balanced economic growth.

“Sinn Féin is also of the view that the money should be spent on fibre to the premise technology. This would give people high quality broadband regardless of whether they live in an urban or a rural area.

“We intend to meet the Permanent Secretary of the Department for the Economy so that we can make this case directly to the department at an early stage.”

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