Wednesday, June 26, 2024

350th tower a milestone for rural connectivity

The Government has welcomed the delivery of Rural Connectivity Group’s (RCG) 350th tower in its push for better regional connectivity.

Waikato’s Te Ākau, which sits roughly 50 kilometres out of Hamilton is home to the new tower.

“The COVID 19 pandemic has highlighted the ever-increasing importance of connectivity. During the lockdowns, Kiwis were forced to re-think their approach to working, learning and socialising – by doing it all from our homes,” said Minister for the Digital Economy and Communications, David Clark.

“RCG’s delivery of 350 towers is an amazing milestone in New Zealand’s connectivity journey and I know the community and businesses in Te Ākau will benefit greatly.”

The Minister said rural connectivity helps farmers to modernise and streamline the way they work by enabling the use of agritech.

“It also allows for local businesses to offer mobile Eftpos payment options, online services and ensures residents can reach emergency services,” he said.

“Having our rural communities in a position to participate fully in the digital economy, is a much-needed push in the right direction as we go about securing an economic recovery for the country.”

The Government is working towards having 99.8% of the population connected to improved broadband by the end of next year.

“And that’s why we’re investing in programmes such as the Rural Broadband Initiative, Marae Digital Connectivity programme and the Mobile Blackspot Fund,” said Mr Clark.

“To date, 1,000 kilometres of State Highway and 86 tourism spots now have mobile coverage, more than 560 marae have been connected to broadband, and over 72,000 rural homes and businesses now have access to improved broadband.”

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