It has been revealed that the roll-out of superfast broadband across the south of Scotland will not be complete until 2025. The Scottish Government programme for government confirmed that the original date of 2021 for the R100 broadband scheme will not now be met. Instead many businesses and residents in Dumfries and Galloway are unlikely to have access to superfast services for another four more years.
The news has been branded “a joke” by Finlay Carson, MSP for Galloway and West Dumfries, who insists the region has been badly let-down again.
He said: “The whole thing has become a joke. How can the government repeatedly make promises and then simply break them? Government ministers had originally pledged to complete the roll-out of superfast broadband by 2021, now they are saying it won’t be ready until 2024-2025 in the south. It means that my constituents will not be able to enjoy what has become the norm for so many people now for considerably longer."
The Scottish Conservative and Unionist MSP said the government’s failure to deliver R100 made a mockery of the promise that Scotland would become a world-leading digital player.
He continued: “There are still far too many communities within Galloway and West Dumfries who are struggling with slow speeds, or in some cases, no connection whatsoever. How can businesses in the region plan for the future and compete properly with others when they don’t have the tools? I have repeatedly raised the issue in Parliament especially as my constituency has one of the largest digital divides in Scotland. We are seriously lagging behind and action is needed now to address this problem.”