BSG comments on new government review of Next Generation Broadbandbsg
Today the government announced its plan to establish an independent review on high-speed broadband as part of its creative economy programme.
Commenting on the announcement Kip Meek, Chairman of the Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG) said, ‘This is the right announcement at the right time. The BSG has stressed the importance of building an evidence base that permits more informed decision-making on the various policy, commercial and regulatory issues. The review addresses some of the BSG’s central concerns about next generation broadband and we’ll be fully engaged to support its work.’
In April last year the BSG set out nine recommendations for action in its Pipe Dreams report on prospects for next generation broadband . The review picks up on several of those recommendations and will help to identify the potential policy options available to government to enable investment in next generation broadband.
In parallel to the questions to be addressed in the review, the government has asked the BSG to examine the economics of fibre deployment and specifically whether deployment of fibre to the premises will be viable without a first step of deploying fibre to the cabinet. Meanwhile, the BSG will engage closely with the review and ensure that it is fully informed by its existing and planned work on issues such as the economic and social value of next generation broadband and potential models for public sector intervention to support broadband deployment.
“There are several positive signs that the UK’s transition to next generation broadband is underway . However the scale of investment required is an order of magnitude greater than the investment that enabled the shift from narrowband to broadband. Government must play its part in creating the right framework to enable timely and efficient investment”, said Meek.