MPs criticise Government gigabit targets response
March 5, 2021
By Colin Mann
Julian Knight, Chair of the UK parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, has criticised the Government for its failure to answer questions on how it intends to deliver on its revised-down broadband targets and the roll-out of 5G.
In a Report, Broadband and the road to 5G, MPs had warned that Ministers risked failing to meet their latest, less ambitious, gigabit-capable broadband target and that the 5G roll-out risked repeating the legacy of mobile ‘not-spots’.
MPs consider that the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has failed to adequately respond to a number of their recommendations in correspondence published today and that key points have been left unanswered. One question not addressed asked for a full assessment of how likely the Department considered that the revised-down target would be met.
Knight has written to Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, asking for a full Government Response by April 1st.
“We raised urgent questions in our Report to Government requesting that it set out detailed plans about how it would deliver on its revised-down target for gigabit-capable broadband and crucially, how likely it was to be met,” stated Knight. “Ministers have failed to answer that key question, among others, and provided inadequate responses elsewhere.”
“Today I have written to Secretary of State Oliver Dowden calling for a full response to our recommendations and to points that have gone unanswered. These are questions that cannot be avoided,” he asserted.