Date lodged: 30 January 2019
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that public intervention in the R100 programme will (a) focus on the areas of market failure and (b) not impact on private investment.
Answered by: Paul Wheelhouse 26 February 2019
It is a legal requirement under state aid legislation that public funding can only be invested in areas of market failure. An Open Market Review was initiated at the end of 2016 to identify those premises that did not have access to superfast broadband, and those for whom there were no commercial delivery plans over the next three years. This information forms the basis of the ‘intervention area’ for the R100 programme, ensuring that public investment will not impact on private investment in broadband infrastructure. I am pleased to note that, in parallel with the R100 procurement, we continue to see significant private sector investment in Scotland; most recently in regard to CityFibres investment programme in Glasgow, in addition to its investment in Aberdeen and Edinburgh.