Executive Council
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
January 2, 2018

Significant Investments to Improve Internet Access in Newfoundland and Labrador

More than 1,500 households in 70 rural and remote communities in Newfoundland and Labrador will be able to do business online, participate in distance education and take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the digital age thanks to a joint federal-provincial investment of $28.45 million in high-speed Internet.

The funding was announced today by the Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

Of the $39.97 million invested in Newfoundland and Labrador:

  • $26.88 million will come from the Federal Government;
  • $1.57 million will come from the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador; and
  • $11.52 million will come from other contributors.

A large portion of federal funding is being allocated through Connect to Innovate, a federal program that aims to provide underserved communities with Internet access at speeds of five megabits per second or more. This program will contribute $24.78 million in funding, and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency will provide an additional $2.1 million.

Quotes
“This investment will help make a significant difference in enhancing productivity and competitiveness in many rural and remote communities across our province. Improved access to high-speed Internet allows hard-working Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to become more engaged in the digital economy, seize new business opportunities, and connect with friends and family around the world. Working with our federal partners in initiatives such as this allows us to develop and nurture opportunities and enhance the prosperity of our entire province.”
Honourable Dwight Ball
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“Access to high-speed Internet is not a luxury; it’s essential. High-speed Internet service is a basic tool that all Canadians should have access to, regardless of their postal code. Canadians need this service to do business, upgrade their education and build stronger communities. Thanks to our Connect to Innovate program, more Canadians will able to participate fully in the digital economy.”
Honourable Navdeep Bains
Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

“This funding announcement is excellent news for Newfoundland and Labrador. Ensuring schools, hospitals, libraries and businesses have access to high-speed Internet service is essential. With these investments, we are equipping Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with the tools they need to reach each other and to reach out to the world.”
Honourable Seamus O’Regan
Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence

“Initiatives such as this are important to ensuring that Newfoundland and Labrador remains competitive on a global scale. Ensuring access to high-speed internet in rural and remote communities is key to growing our economy as it fosters businesses growth and enhances consumer access to products and services. We continue to see the benefits of cooperation between the federal and provincial governments as we work together to strengthen the province.”
Mark Browne
Parliamentary Secretary for Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

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Learn More
Connect to Innovate - https://www.canada.ca/en/innovation-science-economic-development/programs/computer-internet-access/connect-to-innovate.html external link icon

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Media contacts
Michelle Cannizzaro
Office of the Premier
709-729-3960
michellecannizzaro@gov.nl.ca

Karl W. Sasseville
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
343-291-2500

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
343-291-1777
ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic@canada.ca

Eric Humber
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
709-729-4819, 725-9655
erichumber@gov.nl.ca

2018 01 02                              11:00 a.m.