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Full-fibre Broadband Network

Volume 682: debated on Wednesday 14 October 2020

The Government are committed to rolling out broadband across the United Kingdom, although we have much work to do. I am pleased that 50% of premises in Wales have access to full-fibre broadband, compared with only 14% in the UK as a whole. Only a fortnight ago, I was able to go out with the innovative Welsh SME Beacons Telecom, which is helping to deliver broadband in remote and rural parts of Wales—the parts of Wales that Openreach seemingly cannot reach.

I suspect that my question will come as no surprise. I represent one of the most remote parts of the UK, and far too many of my constituents simply cannot get decent connectivity. Could the Minister please share his experience and his know-how with the Scottish Government so that we can get this problem sorted out?

If the Scottish Government care to issue me with an invitation, I stand ready to serve and offer advice such as I can. Actually, I think my advice is that are innovative small companies out there that are able to do things that Openreach apparently cannot do. I saw an example of that in Wales, and I am sure there must be many others. I assure the hon. Gentleman that as a Government who are committed to the Union, our broadband ambitions span not just Wales but the whole of the United Kingdom, from the tip of Penzance right up to the coast of Caithness and beyond.