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National Broadband Plan

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 1 June 2021

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Ceisteanna (173)

Aindrias Moynihan

Ceist:

173. Deputy Aindrias Moynihan asked the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications the engagement he has with National Broadband Ireland to escalate the roll-out of fibre broadband for areas in County Cork still awaiting on survey stage given that surveys are ongoing in certain areas in the County by National Broadband Ireland; the measures that are being taken to progress the roll-out given the commitment on remote working; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29683/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Environment)

There are 79,668 premises in the Intervention Area in County Cork under the National Broadband Plan that will receive access to high speed broadband.   Government investment in Cork in the NBP will be €314 million. As of 27 May, 22,765 (28.57%) premises in the Intervention Area in  County Cork have been surveyed by National Broadband Ireland (NBI). Surveying is the first step towards delivering the new fibre network and informs design solutions for provision of the fibre network:  build works have started in rural parts of Cork. The first homes have been connected in Carrigaline, Co Cork where almost 4,000 premises are available for connection. The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of good reliable broadband to ensure that citizens across Ireland can avail of remote working, education and other essential online facilities.  The Programme for Government commits to seek the acceleration of the roll out of the National Broadband Plan.  My Department continues to engage with NBI to explore the feasibility of accelerating aspects of this rollout to establish to possibility of moving premises which are currently scheduled in years 6 and 7 of the plan to an earlier date.

A dedicated team in NBI is investigating the acceleration of the rollout from its current contracted schedule of seven years.  As part of this investigation NBI is engaging with current build partners (eir and enet) to reschedule build activities and to review potential additional build partners as an option to speed up the build process.  Exploring the potential to accelerate the network rollout is being undertaken in parallel with the measures required to mitigate delays arising as a result of Covid-19.

Further details are available on specific areas within Cork through the NBI website which provides a facility for any premises within the intervention area to register their interest in being provided with deployment updates through its website www.nbi.ie.

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