Business community hails government's broadband pledge header image

Published: 20th May 2016

This week's pledge by the government to improve access to high-speed broadband across the UK has been welcomed by the business community.

In the Queen's Speech, ministers confirmed that they are bringing forward measures to give every home and business in the country a legal right to a fast broadband connection.

Responding to the news, the CBI said prioritising the digital revolution is vital if the UK's productivity levels are to grow.

Josh Hardie, deputy director-general of the body, commented: "Ensuring that broadband reaches all corners of the country will breed a new generation of companies in an increasingly competitive environment."

Mr Hardie went on to state that it is good to see the government making a strong commitment to creating jobs, driving growth and stimulating investment to create a more prosperous society.

He said this is important in light of the focus that is currently being placed on next month's European Union (EU) referendum.

"Whatever the outcome of the EU referendum, it’s vital the government ploughs ahead with the rest of its programme," Mr Hardie stated.

The British Chambers of Commerce also singled the government's broadband pledge out for praise.

Dr Adam Marshall, acting director-general of the group, commented: "If implemented in full and at pace, this could go some way to improving the poor digital connectivity that far too many firms face."

However, he insisted that "big decisions" on certain issues where businesses are eager to see action are needed ahead of new legislation.

For instance, Dr Marshall said businesses want decisive steps to be taken on boosting aviation capacity, tackling skills gaps and easing the tax burden "at a time of significant uncertainty".