Canadian government funding provides high-speed internet to Southwestern Ontario regions

While many in Canada enjoy uninterrupted internet access, there are still a number of holes to be found across the country.

The federal and Ontario provincial governments recently announced a joint funding initiative to provide high-speed internet to over 300 communities in Southwestern Ontario. The exact list of communities wasn’t provided.

According to a statement released by the federal government recently, the investment will amount to $281 million, and the efforts to bring internet access to a wider variety of Canadians will be carried out through SouthWestern Integrated Fibre Technologies (SWIFT).

The federal and provincial governments will both contribute up to $90 million through the New Building Canada Fund’s Provincial-Territorial Infrastructure Component–Small Communities Fund while The Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus will fund the remainder of the project.

“The Government of Canada’s ongoing investments in broadband infrastructure are improving connectivity in communities across the country. By providing better access to a wider variety of online tools and resources, we are increasing the potential for economic growth and diversification in these communities, and are helping the middle class and those working hard to join it,” said Minister of innovation, science and economic development, Navdeep Bains, who made the announcement.

The announcement was made on behalf of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Communities. The Government of Canada has also outlined in Budget 2016 an investment of $500 million over five years for a new program which will extend high-speed broadband coverage in rural and remote areas.

Bob Chiarelli, Ontario Minister of Infrastructure, alluded to the growing significant of online access in an increasingly digital age.

“This announcement will bring critical broadband infrastructure to the southwestern Ontario region. High-speed internet will connect people and businesses to the resources they need to compete in the global marketplace and strengthen our economy. Equipping the province with the tools they need to succeed is one of the ways we’re helping to build Ontario up,” said Chiarelli in a statement.

Related reading: Canadian government invests $7.1 million i four innovative Atlantic Canada projects

[source]Government of Canada[/source]