Fianna Fáil Press Office
Declan Breathnach TD
Louth

01 February 2018

Potential collapse of National Broadband Plan on the cards following Eir’s withdrawal – Breathnach

– Louth communities now doubting if broadband will ever be delivered –

Fianna Fáil TD for Louth Declan Breathnach has said that the ability of the Government to deliver large national infrastructural projects is in serious doubt as Eir announces that it is withdrawing from the bidding process for the National Broadband Plan.

The decision by
Eir to withdraw from the NBP represents a damning indictment of Fine Gael in office. Rural communities up and down the country have been kept waiting for seven years for the roll out of high speed broadband by this government.

Originally promised for 2016, the Government last year committed to delivering broadband to 540,000 households in rural Ireland by 2016.

Deputy Breathnach said, “This date is now is serious doubt, and I believe that this week’s announcement by
Eir now puts this delayed target at jeopardy.

“I get the sense that the Government aren’t really serious about rural Ireland and rural communities such as those in Louth.

“Broadband is not a luxury for schools, families, businesses and farmers – it’s an absolute necessity. If it is not delivered soon, the benefits may be lost for ever as investment will not flow to rural and regional Ireland.

“Successive Government Ministers have failed miserably to bring this crucial national project to completion.

“I am sad to say that I have serious doubts about when, if ever, it will be delivered. It represents to me one of the greatest government failures in living memory, and demonstrates that when it comes to thinking big and delivering for rural Ireland, Fine Gael always fall short,” concluded Breathnach.

– Ends –