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Communications Minister Simon Bridges has welcomed the start of the Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) build in four more regional towns as the extension of the Government’s broadband programme continues to roll out across the country.

In January the Government announced an investment of $300 million to extend UFB to another 423,000 New Zealanders across a further 151 towns.

“Having access to fast and reliable broadband is critical to growing our regional economies and to New Zealand’s future,” Mr Bridges says.

“Over one million New Zealand households and businesses already have access to fibre. Our plan to extend UFB is now underway in 12 towns and areas, with the build starting in Omokoroa, Te Puna, Ngaruawahia and Stratford this month.

“Once the UFB build is completed by the end of 2024, approximately 85 per cent of New Zealanders will have access to speeds of close to 1,000 Megabits per second.

“This means more productive businesses, improvements to health care through video-conferencing between doctors, specialists and patients, and improved access to online resources for students and teachers,” Mr Bridges says.

Further information is available at www.broadband.govt.nz. A list of the areas that are receiving access to UFB in each region and an indication of timing for the rollout is available on Crown Fibre Holdings website here.

Information on new builds

Omokoroa and Te Puna (Bay of Plenty region)

In total, the Government is investing around $106 million to deliver UFB in the Bay of Plenty region. The build in Omokoroa will be completed in mid-2018, and Te Puna in the first half of 2019, providing 1,872 premises with access to UFB. Tauranga, Rotorua and Whakatane already have access to UFB. Fibre deployment is also planned for Te Puke, Kawerau, Katikati, Opotiki and Ohope/Coastlands, among other areas in the region.

Ngaruawahia (Waikato region)

In total, the Government is investing around $170 million to deliver UFB in the Waikato region. The build in Ngaruawahia will be completed in mid-2018, providing 1,877 premises with access to UFB. Cambridge, Hamilton, Te Awamutu, Taupo and Tokoroa already have access to UFB. Fibre deployment is also planned for Waihi, Thames, Morrinsville and Matamata, among other areas in the region.

Stratford (Taranaki region)

In total, the Government is investing around $32 million to deliver UFB in the Taranaki region. The build in Stratford will be completed in mid-2018, providing 2,756 premises with access to UFB. Hawera and New Plymouth already have access to UFB. Fibre deployment is also planned for Waitara, Inglewood, Eltham and Opunake, among other areas in the region.

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