The Scottish government has launched a three-month consultation to gather feedback on proposals to enhance broadband connection speeds in new homes across Scotland. The aim is to amend building regulations to ensure that all new build homes are equipped with the necessary gigabit-ready infrastructure for gigabit-capable connections.
Under the proposed regulations, developers would be required to install a gigabit-capable connection in each new build home, with a cost cap of £2,000 per dwelling. If a gigabit-capable connection cannot be installed within the cost cap, the next fastest broadband connection would need to be installed instead.
Innovation Minister Richard Lochhead highlighted the importance of efficient digital infrastructure, particularly in light of recent circumstances. A reliable and fast digital connection is essential for work, communication, and accessing public services. The government’s digital strategy focuses on ensuring that no one is left behind in the transition to a fair, green, and growing economy.
The consultation, which will remain open until 12 December 2023, seeks input on the proposed regulations and their implementation.
This initiative is part of Scotland’s Full Fibre Charter, which aims to extend full fibre broadband access across the country. Gigaloch, a telecommunications company, recently became the ninth signatory to the Full Fibre Charter.
It is important to note that telecommunications is a reserved matter under the Scotland Act 1998. The UK government previously consulted on new build connectivity proposals and implemented them through devolved powers, limited to England only.
Enhancing broadband connection speeds in new homes is a crucial step towards bridging the digital divide and ensuring equal access to digital services. The Scottish government’s commitment to efficient and resilient digital infrastructure aligns with their National Strategy for Economic Transformation. Consultation on these proposals reflects their dedication to creating a fair and inclusive digital environment for all residents of Scotland.
– Gigabit-ready infrastructure: Physical infrastructure designed to support gigabit-capable connections, which provide exceptionally fast internet speeds.
– Gigabit-capable connection: An internet connection that is capable of delivering speeds up to 1 gigabit per second (Gbps).
– Cost cap: A limit set on the amount that can be spent on a particular item or service.
– Full Fibre Charter: An initiative in Scotland aimed at extending the availability of full fibre broadband connections.
– Reserved matter: An issue or area of governance that falls under the authority of a central or federal government, rather than regional or devolved authorities.
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