Government tops up Welsh broadband contribution to £5,500

Rural businesses will now be able to install Gigabit internet, even if they had not previously been on broadband supplier roadmaps

Welsh businesses are now eligible to apply for funding up to 5,500 of government funding towards getting Gigabit broadband installed on their premises.

The Welsh and UK governments have teamed up to help improve connectivity in some of the most rural parts of the country, while also making it cheaper for businesses to take advantage of speedier connections to better conduct business.

Although superfast broadband is available around most of Wales, this scheme would help boost connectivity in the remaining 5% of areas that currently don't have such fast internet.

At present, Welsh firms can apply for funding of up to 2,500 for installation of Gigabit internet. But the Welsh government has now pledged to contribute an additional 3,000 for businesses of a certain size and up to 300 per residential property.

"This exclusive scheme for Welsh businesses and communities is a vital part of our modern Industrial Strategy and build a Britain that is fit for the future," said UK Minister for Digital Margot James. "Working with the Welsh Government, together we can make sure that everyone in Wales has the connectivity they need for the digital age."

Overall, the Welsh and UK governments have put aside a pot of 200 million to support superfast broadband in Wales, with the mission to connect 733,000 Welsh homes and businesses that commercial broadband businesses had not included in their plans to provide faster broadband.

"This voucher scheme can provide a vital funding source for group connectivity projects, and could be of great benefit to communities currently without access," said Deputy Minister for Economy Lee Waters. "I'm pleased we've been able to work with the UK Government to provide an enhanced scheme for Wales, taking into account the particular challenges we face here with geography and the location of premises."

From 2020, the government will roll out its Universal Service Obligation that makes superfast broadband a legal right for all homes and businesses in the UK.

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