Page last updated at 09:07 GMT, Friday, 8 January 2010

Euro cash hope on rural internet

Home computer
High-speed internet links are a problem in parts of Wales

European funding could be used to bring high-speed broadband services to rural areas around Wales.

Businesses and communities in parts of the country have found it difficult to gain broadband access.

Now the assembly government is investigating how to use European funds to boost high-speed internet access.

Deputy first minister Ieuan Wyn Jones, AM, said it was vital all areas of Wales had broadband access and grants could be made available to communities.

For some projects, grants of up to about £45,000 (50,000 euros) could be on offer to help people in broadband "not-spots".

Mr Jones said he wanted everywhere in Wales to have access to high speed internet.

"In the 21st Century, it is vital that people in all parts of Wales gain access to a high-speed internet service, and it is essential that businesses are fully equipped with the right information communications technology (ICT) infrastructure to compete successfully in a global market.

"ICT plays a major part in helping us to meet our goals, building a strong and sustainable Welsh economy and providing opportunities for all," he said.

Long-running concerns over broadband access in rural parts of Wales have been raised in meetings between the assembly government and community leaders.

It is believed over the next few weeks details will emerge about how the European funds may be used.

County 'notspot' broadband survey
15 Apr 08 |  Mid Wales
Calls for rural broadband inquiry
13 Nov 07 |  Mid Wales
Rural broadband 'black hole' fear
12 Oct 07 |  Mid Wales
Rural broadband makes huge impact
02 Jan 07 |  Wiltshire
Broadband in 39% of Welsh homes
13 Feb 06 |  Wales


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