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September 20, 2012

UK govt to invest £114m to boost ultrafast broadband networks

London will receive a £25m investment while Leeds and Bradford will jointly receive £14.4m

By CBR Staff Writer

The UK Government is planning invest £114m to establish ultrafast broadband networks across 10 cities across the region.

Out of the total investment, London will receive a £25m while Leeds and Bradford will jointly receive £14.4m. The funding for other cities include £13.7m for Belfast, £12m for Manchester, £11.3m for Bristol, £11m for Cardiff, £10.7m for Edinburgh, £10m for Birmingham and £6m for Newcastle.

The investment is £14m more than was originally set aside for the rollout, which was announced by Chancellor George Osborne in November 2011.

The money will be used to build city-wide networks, providing homes and businesses broadband speeds of about 100 megabits per second and high speed wireless Internet access, the announcement said.

UK Culture Secretary Maria Miller said that fast broadband is essential for growth, and is key to the country’s economic future.

"These ten cities have produced ambitious and comprehensive plans, which will turn them into digital leaders, and give their local economies a real boost," Miller said. "The new investment will help put these cities at the centre of the digital stage, competing for jobs and investment with the best in the world."

Each city is anticipated to invest some of its own funds in the broadband projects besides the government money.

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Plans also include extending ultrafast broadband to an extra 230,000 residential and 55,000 business premises by 2015.

The government expects to make the UK as the fastest broadband network place in Europe by 2015 while in the second phase of this initiative the country is planning to allocate another £50m which would be shared between 10 smaller cities.

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