Tavish Scott MSP has written to the new Cabinet Secretary responsible for broadband connections, Fergus Ewing, to highlight the importance of rolling out superfast broadband to the remotest areas of Shetland.
In the letter, Shetland’s MSP highlighted the difficulties facing residents in areas such as Uyeasound where current broadband speeds make even basic online tasks difficult. Concerns have been raised that households located the furthest from local exchanges will miss out on the rollout.
Commenting after the issue was also raised in Parliament, Tavish Scott said:
“The First Minister mentioned superfast broadband in her first speech in the newly elected Parliament. The Scottish Government say that every home and business will have access to superfast broadband by 2021. That is a very significant commitment which I support. But I want to know when this rollout will benefit the hardest to reach areas. People in many areas of Shetland told me of their broadband speed woes as I went round the doors in the election campaign. So it is not just a matter of reaching each house with broadband. The test is what on-line speed will be available.
“Crofters have already faced a difficult year with delays to farm payments. Next week the Fergus Ewing will explain to Parliament what he is going to do to fix the colossal shambles of CAP payments. Mr Ewing is also now responsible for the rural economy. So I am asking him to explain how businesses across Shetland will have access to the same broadband speeds as others across Scotland. The new government and the new Parliament must make real progress on superfast broadband. I will press this case with Ministers at every opportunity.”
Note: Tavish Scott MSP’s letter to Fergus Ewing can be viewed by clicking here.