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Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 24th January 2011.

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Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the effects on UK competitiveness of the change in the target date for universal broadband service from 2012 to 2015.

Photo of Ed Vaizey Ed Vaizey The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

The Government's approach to broadband is to drive the rollout of superfast broadband to as much of the country as possible and to deliver at least a decent level of broadband access to virtually everybody as part of that commitment. That approach is underpinned by the work that BDUK conducted over summer 2010 examining the choice of cost effective solutions available to provide a minimum level of coverage to all premises without access to at least 2 MBps. Among the conclusions of that exercise was that a universal service commitment should not be seen as separate from the superfast broadband objective, but rather an integral part of pushing next generation networks deep into rural Britain. The £530 million allocated to support broadband rollout up to 2015 will help the UK achieve its aim of having the best superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015.

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