As plans to improve broadband speeds across the UK continue in earnest, upgrades in Wales are gaining momentum with the announcement of the first 14 areas that are set to benefit from the Superfast Cymru project.
The £425 million scheme is being carried out alongside BT, which has a stake of around £220 million in the deal. The EU is contributing around £90 million with the rest made up from Welsh money and BDUK (Broadband Delivery UK) funding.
The first 14 areas to receive the superfast broadband will be Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Gwynedd, Isle of Anglesey, Merthyr Tydfil, Neath Porth Talbot, Newport, Powys, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Swansea and the Vale of Glamorgan.
“A rollout plan has been prepared together with the Welsh Government's economic priorities - including the enterprise zones and the Powys local growth zone," said Welsh Business Minister Edwina Hart. The initial rollout is taking place throughout 2013/14, with the project extending to all of Wales in 2014/15.
"The Superfast Cymru programme is set to transform the broadband landscape in Wales and to promote economic growth and sustainable jobs in Wales,” Hart commented. “It will ensure we are at the forefront of the global digital economy and help to champion Wales as a great place to live, work, invest and visit."
The Superfast Cymru website, where information and updates on the project will be posted, has now gone live.