MP Alister Jack met with the UK Government’s Digital Minister Matthew Hancock to press the case for more investment in digital connectivity in Dumfries and Galloway.
In June 2016, Dumfries and Galloway ranked 606 out of 650 constituencies across the UK for Superfast Broadband availability and only 20.4% of connections in the region were receiving superfast speeds.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Jack said:
“One of the biggest issues facing people in Dumfries and Galloway is the lack of fast and reliable broadband connections and the poor mobile phone signal.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our local economy and to compete in the digital world that we now live in, these businesses need access to superfast broadband speeds.
“I made this very clear to Matthew Hancock at my meeting with him and argued that more needs to be invested in improving connectivity in Dumfries and Galloway.
“Rather than giving money to the Scottish Government and allowing them to decide where to spend it, I want to see money coming straight to Dumfries and Galloway and for decisions to be made locally about where that money needs to be spent.
“The UK Government want to introduce a Universal Service Obligation giving everyone the legal right to request a connection at a minimum speed of 10Mbps, up to a reasonable cost threshold – by 2020. This would make a huge difference to businesses in large rural constituencies such as Dumfries and Galloway and I look forward to working with the Government to ensure its introduction.”