Gigabit broadband for all target pledged by Boris Johnson scaled down | Politics News

The government’s goal of bringing gigabit broadband to “every home and business across the UK” by 2025 appears to have been scaled back to reach 85% of the country.

Boris Johnson made the initial pledge as part of his 2019 manifesto, with £5bn funding the scheme.

However, in a press release published Tuesday, the Bureau for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport cited a narrower target.

Direct Politics: Boris Johnson toured the country last week as PM

During a visit to Dorset to mark the start of the first major contract in the plan, the outgoing prime minister said he was “very proud” of what his government has done during his tenure to continue. continue to deploy technology, “deliver what I said I would do”.

Mr. Johnson added: “When I first became prime minister, only 7% of facilities in this country had gigabit broadband, that’s now up to 70%. If you take it into rural communities, backcountry, what you’re going to do is level up”. “

“If you give people opportunities they don’t have, the ability to connect in a way that’s completely unimaginable – allows businesses to grow and thrive in remote areas.

“It means people can stay where they’ve grown up, they don’t have to live in towns or cities and it’s completely transformative.”

But talking about the goal, he said, “I said we’re going to try to get 85% gigabit or 100% gigabit broadband. We went from 7% when I started to 70% in three years. , despite COVID. It’s not half bad, in my opinion.”

DCMS describes the increase in availability as “metric” and “represents a promotion in action”.

And it said the £6m Dorset contract “marks the start of a series of Gigabit Project delivery contracts to be awarded in the coming months”, with many planned due to start in hard-to-reach areas. reach in Cornwall, Cambridgeshire, Cumbria, and across the North East of England before the end of the year.

Asked about the target change, a No 10 spokesman said Mr Johnson “remains committed to providing better broadband coverage to the UK and we’ve seen an example of that.” that’s today”.

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