Remote, or connected working has the potential to transform rural Ireland, allowing people to pursue careers in good quality jobs while continuing to live in their local communities. It also has the potential to encourage more people to move to the regions, to provide increased trade for local businesses and to revitalise our rural towns.
A number of Government Departments and agencies have provided investment for the development of remote working facilities over the last number of years. My own Department has invested over €50 million in these facilities since 2016 through the Town and Village Renewal Scheme and the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.
My Department has also invested in remote working infrastructure and connectivity through the Broadband Connection Points (BCP) initiative.
I have secured an additional €5 million under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme this year to support the development of remote working infrastructure at hubs and BCPs throughout the country. I hope to be in a position to announce details of this funding stream shortly.