South of Scotland awarded £5m for super-fast broadband plan
A South of Scotland Alliance scheme that aims to roll out super-fast broadband across the region has been awarded £5 million of funding by the Scottish government.
The organisation wants to bring next-generation connectivity to around three-quarters of the population in the south of Scotland who are expected to miss out on deployments from commercial telecoms firms.
Scottish Infrastructure and Capital Investment Secretary Alex Neil explained the investment has come from the £144.3 million funding pot that will be used to extend super-fast broadband access across the whole of Scotland.
Under the SNP administration's broadband plans, next-generation access will be available to all of Scotland by 2020, while "significant progress" towards achieving this goal will be reached by 2015.
Mr Neil said faster broadband will be "hugely beneficial" to the south of Scotland, encouraging businesses to establish operations in the area and helping existing employers to expand.
He added the £5 million of funding is an acknowledgement of the "particular issues" that exist in remote and rural parts of the country, and "of the collaborative efforts being made by colleagues in the south of Scotland to progress an improved digital infrastructure".