National Broadband Plan welcomed by rural TDs

However, there are some concerns that the plan will not be cost effective

Broadband, public procurement, Ireland, strategy, Alex White, high speed broadband, investment

Image: enet.ie

The updated National Broadband Plan has been welcomed by several rural TDs.

The plan will see broadband expanded to nine hundred thousand rural homes and businesses from next summer and will take up to five years to complete.

Communications Minister Denis Naughten, said it would be a private sector ownership model, as it would leave more money available to the government for other matters, such as housing and health.

The network will be privatised after the initial 25 year State contract is over.

Sinn Fein and Labour have hit out at the plan, saying that there is a risk that costs will be ramped up or that the service will be pulled, if it's not cost effective.

But Mattie McGrath, Rural Independent Group TD, says there are checks and balances to prevent this: "The other way would be waiting for public money, competing against health, competing against roads and education. We'd never get it done, it'd put us back for another five or ten years. And it will be remaining in public ownership for 25 years forward, and that's a long time."