Boost for broadband speed

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THE North East is set to benefit from a share of European Union cash aimed at bringing super-fast broadband to everyone.

The £8billion investment announced by the European Commission yesterday, aims to help eliminate internet blackspots, which blight parts of the region.

It comes at a time when the region’s economy has been hit harder than most.

North East MEP Fiona Hall welcomed the news.

The Liberal Democrat believes it would help to both create and safeguard jobs in the region.

She said: “Despite recent investment, parts of the North East are still stuck in the internet slow lane.

“This new multibillion-pound plan will ensure every-one has access to super-fast broadband, wherever they live or work.

“It is particularly vital for businesses which increasingly rely on the internet.

“It will allow smaller villages and towns to sustain businesses that have previously been forced to relocate to secure faster internet connections.

“The work required to roll these improvements out will also help create jobs in the North East.

“In difficult economic times, it is right that major investment is aimed at encouraging growth, and ensuring we have the infrastructure to remain competitive in the future.”