Canadian government allocates $284M to bring broadband to rural areas

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The Canadian government is moving to bridge the broadband divide with a pledge to bring up to 5 Mbps download speeds to an additional 280,000 households that either have no access or can only get dial-up service.

Set to focus on rural and remote communities, the government's Connecting Canadians plan includes an investment of up to $284 million over the next three years to create thousands of new investment opportunities in Canada.

Over the next few weeks, the government said it would invite both citizens and ISPs to provide input and comments on the Connecting Canadians site on communities that could be eligible to receive funding. Information about what communities are eligible for funding will be made public this fall, followed by a call for applications from service providers.

This project will provide incentives for service providers to invest in both wireless and wireline-based broadband services. The government said the first projects will be announced in spring 2015.

"Connecting Canadians is about ensuring that Canadians, whether they live in urban centres or remote regions of the country, have access to the latest wireless technologies and high-speed networks at the most affordable prices possible," said Canada's Minister of Industry James Moore in a release.

For more:
- see the release

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