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Broadband figures show challenge ahead

25 May 2005

Broadband figures show challenge ahead

Information Technology and Communications Minister David Cunliffe today welcomed the release of OECD figures on broadband uptake.

"These figures show that we are heading in the right direction but there is a substantial challenge ahead." said David Cunliffe.

The figures showed that broadband connections had increased by 81 per cent from 2003 to the end of 2004, twice the average OECD growth. Overall New Zealand was ranked 22 out of 30 in terms of broadband subscribers.

"In spite of some very positive growth in 2004 our growth rate was only in the middle of the pack. I am hopeful that our growth rate will be significantly higher for 2005." said David Cunliffe.

$24 million has been made available as part of the government's Digital Strategy to promote high-speed capacity in regional centres and support innovative ways of making broadband available.

The government is also working in a number of other areas such as Project PROBE and the Advanced Network, and regulatory work is continuing under the Telecommunications Act to create a competitive market.

"The government's goal is that we will be in the upper quartile of the OECD for broadband uptake by 2010. Government, business and communities need to work together to make this goal a reality because it will benefit us all."

ENDS

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