Sheehan attacks Government’s failure on broadband 16/10/16 : the chronicle.ie

Sheehan attacks Government’s failure on broadband 16/10/16

| October 16, 2016

Councillor Michael Sheehan has said that the news of the further delay in the National Broadband Plan rollout to the end of the decade and into the 2020s will hinder the chances of investment  by SMEs and FDIs into County Wexford.

“For the past five years, successive ministers, of all political colours, and now of none, have presided over a national broadband plan that has failed to start, let alone deliver a service to the Irish people.”

“Accessing quality broadband is a core requirement for small and medium sized businesses across the country. Delays in rolling out a national broadband scheme is damaging the ability of SMEs to grow their businesses, and jeopardising future FDI by corporations who rely on high-speed, broadband to connect their global operations in real-time.

High Speed Broadband is one of the key components of the modern economy and the key asset that companies need to compete, expand and develop new business. Therefore, poor or no broadband is a comparative disadvantage and a weakness in the County’s economy.

Up to 100,000 people, mainly in rural areas of County Wexford may require the state to directly provide high-speed, broadband. The commercial sector such as Vodafone and SIRO will be in the large urban areas in 2017 so in my opinion, the State has a duty to support Rural Wexford by ensuring they have the same services.

“Delay after delay has beset the Government’s broadband scheme. First it was 90% of homes and businesses by the end of 2015, then it was 85% by 2019, 100% by 2022.  Now it’s looking like 2023, and no guarantee that it will be delivered at all, quite frankly, it’s been a catalogue of delays, announcements, re-announcements and even more delays.”

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