$1 million investment to boost digital connectivity for WA

Friday, 05 February, 2021

$1 million investment to boost digital connectivity for WA

The WA Government will invest $1 million towards providing high-speed broadband services to the Northern Goldfields, as part of a pilot project to bridge the digital divide in regional Western Australia.

An expression of interest will be issued soon for telecommunications carriers to partner in a project to deliver fast, reliable and scalable broadband to local businesses and communities in Leonora, Laverton and the Menzies districts.

Land-based and satellite technology communications companies, and providers of emerging digital connectivity options, are encouraged to submit an expression of interest. The grant from the WA Government’s Agricultural Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund complements the Digital Farm Grants program, which has provided $13.3 million to 20 projects in Western Australia over the past four years.

The initiative will enable pastoralists in the area to employ Internet of Things remote sensing devices across their properties and provide an improved internet connection. Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan said the WA Government is committed to working with its partners to deliver fast, reliable, affordable and scalable broadband, to drive growth and new jobs in the region.

“Northern Goldfields communities have consistently raised connectivity issues with us, with the nbn failing to deliver the speed or bandwidth they need to grow. This $1 million investment creates the opportunity to explore a whole range of telecommunications technologies, both existing and emerging, to deliver high-grade broadband services to this remote region,” said MacTiernan.

Mining and Pastoral Region MLC Kyle McGinn noted that fast and reliable internet is a livability issue, and being able to participate in online activity is crucial to stay connected with people.

“This McGowan government investment will provide a much-needed, high-grade broadband service to pastoralists, local businesses and communities in this remote area of our state. I am pleased to see action on this issue as it has been raised with me before, particularly by the younger generation in Leonora,” said McGinn.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/sodawhiskey

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