Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Tory MSP Edward Mountain raises fears about rural broadband

Edward Mountain
Edward Mountain

Fears rural households may face higher internet charges were raised yesterday after it emerged the R100 broadband procurement programme will not achieve 100% coverage on its own.

Tory MSP Edward Mountain claimed he was “shocked and dismayed” at the Scottish Government’s handling of the superfast broadband roll-out.

The Highland MSP was reacting to an exchange in Holyrood’s Rural Economy Committee last week in which Connectivity Minister Paul Wheelhouse explained that R100 procurement would not reach all premises.

Mr Wheelhouse said the procurement process would reach most households and businesses but other means would have to be used to meet the government’s target of 100% coverage by the end of 2021.

This would include voucher schemes and satellite solutions.

Yesterday Mr Mountain warned: “That means private companies will be expected to plug the gap at their own expense and that could mean there are significant price differences for internet access across the Highlands.

“It is now almost inevitable the Scottish Government will break their promise of delivering R100 by 2021 and I fear that Highlanders will not access superfast broadband until 2024.”

Mr Wheelhouse responded, saying: “We chose to seize the initiative on addressing poor coverage rather than wait for the UK Government to act and we are now going above and beyond what is required of any Scottish Government to deliver superfast broadband to 100% of premises in Scotland.

“Mr Mountain will be aware that all regulation and legislation regarding telecommunications are reserved matters that are the responsibility of UK Ministers and it is a UK-wide market that they oversee that was failing, and continues to fail, many communities.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]

More from the Press and Journal Scottish politics team

More from the Press and Journal