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Economy Economy

Work to provide gigaspeed connectivity to as many businesses and homes as possible

Last updated: 09:33am 12 November 2019

We will work to provide gigaspeed connectivity to as many businesses and homes as possible.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.78

Our verdict

In 2017, 9 adults out of 10 and 84% of all businesses reported having access to the internet. Moreover, e-commerce presented the biggest year-to-year increase of all sectors, growing by 16% from 2016 to 2017. Nevertheless, the average UK broadband connection was slower than its European counterparts, and presented local variation.  This is a promise to “work to provide” (note, not “provide”) gigaspeed connectivity to as many businesses and homes as possible.

In March 2018, the government launched the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme. It will provide £67 million for eligible individuals and businesses to claim back a proportion of the cost of gigabit-capable connections.

In February 2019, the government announced a pilot scheme to provide gigabit connection to over 100 primary schools in rural areas. Furthermore, in May 2019, the government launched the Broadband for Rural Communities Scheme, increasing funding for gigabit broadband vouchers in hard-to-reach areas.

After the launch of the gigabit broadband vouchers and the schemes to increase gigabit reach in rural communities, we have evidence that the government has undertaken activity to “work to provide” gigabit connections to as many citizens as possible. With such a loose scope, we can mark this policy as ‘done’.

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