16/12/2004

NI leading the way on broadband - Minister

Enterprise Minister Barry Gardiner has confirmed that the number of broadband users in Northern Ireland has increased by over 200% in the last 12 months, with usage levels here exceeding the 125,000 mark.

Highlighting the importance of availability and uptake of broadband in a largely rural area such as Northern Ireland, the Minister said: “Broadband can be delivered over telephone lines, by cable, mobile phone, wireless and satellite, giving consumers a very wide choice.

“Broadband creates a level playing field for our businesses, allowing them to compete in the global market place. It also offers endless opportunities for personal users, from schoolchildren to pensioners.”

Mr Gardiner said the Government was committed to making Northern Ireland the leading broadband region in the UK.

“We are on target to deliver broadband access to every home and business in Northern Ireland by the end of 2005 - the first part of Europe to boast such access,” he added.

(MB)

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