Fine Gael TD for Galway West & Mayo South

€303 million to be invested in Galway and Mayo as part of the National Broadband Plan

€152 million and €151 million to be invested in Galway and Mayo respectively as part of the National Broadband Plan

Today’s appointment of the Preferred Bidder for the National Broadband Plan paves the way for investment of over €300 million to bring high speed broadband to communities across Galway and Mayo

As a former Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment I know of the substantial work that has been invested in the National Broadband Plan in terms of workers on the project, the number of hours and the amount of funding allocated – all of which reflect the importance of high speed broadband to households, businesses and communities regardless of location.

As a TD for Galway West and Mayo South I know of the challenges that homes and businesses have had in terms of accessing high speed broadband with consequences for conducting and winning businesses and jobs and for accessing services as more and more services become available online.

A total of €3 billion over twenty-five years is earmarked for the National Broadband Plan which will provide fibre-powered broadband speeds of 150 mb/s rising to 500 mb/s to 98% of premises across the country. This €3 billion figure is the maximum possible cost which includes €345 million in VAT and a €545 million subsidy that are part of a legally-binding contract between the Government and a new Irish-registered company, National Broadband Ireland.

The NBP includes investment of approximately €152 million in Galway and €151 million which will ensure that all households, all businesses and all communities in Galway and Mayo will be able to harness the benefits that high speed broadband brings.

Such benefits include remote and flexible working, access to e-health services, access to education, and employment opportunities as well as access to the myriad of other services, such as entertainment and recreation that other communities in urban parts of Ireland already enjoy.

The National Broadband Plan is fundamentally about equality. It underpins the efforts of Government and others to ensure that communities are vibrant and sustainable across all of Ireland – urban, suburban, villages, townlands and islands. And achieving such equality of opportunity will be worth every cent.