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Shared Rural Network

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:27 pm on 28th October 2019.

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Photo of Nicky Morgan Nicky Morgan The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport 4:27 pm, 28th October 2019

The hon. Gentleman is right that having good broadband and good mobile connectivity is important for all of us, but particularly for our small and medium-sized businesses, many of which are run from rural, even residential, premises and need that connectivity to be fast and reliable, and not, as he says, to fade in and out. I hope he will welcome the fact that at the moment the coverage of all four operators is 78% in Northern Ireland, but once the shared rural network programme has taken effect, which we very much hope it will and as it is expected to, it will reach 91% of Northern Ireland.