Rural and remote communities in Nova Scotia will benefit from faster Internet

News release

Residents in 64 communities to get high-speed Internet access thanks to a $26.4-million investment

May 4, 2018, Greenwich, Nova Scotia

Internet access is more than just a convenience; communities, businesses and institutions need it to find information, offer services and create opportunities. That’s why the Government of Canada is investing over $17 million through the Connect to Innovate program to bring high-speed Internet access or faster Internet to 64 rural and remote communities and up to 80 institutions in Nova Scotia. Of the 64 communities that will benefit from this investment, one is an Indigenous community.

During a visit to Bishop Hall in Greenwich, Nova Scotia, today, the Honourable Scott Brison, President of the Treasury Board, joined by fellow Nova Scotia members of Parliament, announced the funding on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

Minister Brison highlighted the federal investment in four projects that will benefit 15 communities and 16 institutions in western Nova Scotia:

  • The Municipality of the County of Kings will receive $5.6 million for a project that will provide 10 communities and 12 institutions with access to high-speed Internet services.
  • Bell Canada will receive $388,331 for three projects that will provide five communities, including one Indigenous community, and four institutions with access to high-speed Internet services.

This investment will help residents of these communities connect with family and friends, do business online, participate in distance education and take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the digital age.

The Government of Canada’s $500-million Connect to Innovate program is investing in building the digital backbone of high-speed Internet networks. Backbone networks are the digital highways that move data in and out of communities. These highways carry large amounts of data that are essential for schools, hospitals, libraries and businesses to function in a digital world.

Quotes

“For rural communities in Nova Scotia, digital investment through the Connect to Innovate program enhances opportunities for residents of all ages. This important investment will support farming and fishing industries in data collection and observation, students and youth in learning, and residents in day-to-day life with connected devices. It’s all part of our government’s plan to help create opportunities for all communities, including our rural maritime communities.”

– The Honourable Scott Brison, President of the Treasury Board

“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 where they live. Our communities need this service to do business, upgrade their education and build stronger communities. Thanks to our Connect to Innovate program, more people will be able to participate fully in the digital economy.”

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

“Improving high-speed Internet will be an economic game-changer for Nova Scotia. It will help spur innovation, advance competitiveness and build a better economic future for Nova Scotia. And it’s so much more. Nova Scotians will be able to gain better access to health care services, education and training programs, and other community and social supports, no matter where they live.”

– Keith Irving, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Kings South, on behalf of the Honourable Geoff MacLellan, Nova Scotia Minister of Business

“Reliable high-speed connectivity is critical for the sustainability and development of rural communities. The Municipality of the County of Kings is pleased to be a partner in the delivery of this program. This investment will help residents connect with family and friends, do business and participate in distance education, enhancing our collective ambition to connect globally and take advantage of a world of opportunities.”

– Peter Muttart, Mayor, Municipality of the County of Kings

“Bell is pleased to partner with the governments of Canada and Nova Scotia on these important broadband investments. Together we can help ensure that rural and remote communities across the province can enjoy the social and economic benefits that come with access to Canada’s best broadband networks, further enabling consumers, businesses and institutions to obtain information, offer services and create opportunities.”

– Glen LeBlanc, Executive Vice-President and CFO, Bell Canada and BCE and Vice-Chair, Bell Aliant

Quick facts

  • Of the $26.4 million being invested throughout Nova Scotia:

    • $17.7 million will come from the federal Connect to Innovate program;
    • $1.2 million will come from the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust (to be confirmed by trustees) established by the Government of Nova Scotia;
    • $6.9 million will be provided by the applicants; and
    • $517,000 will come from other sources.
  • Connect to Innovate is part of the Government of Canada’s Innovation and Skills Plan, a multi-year strategy to create well-paying jobs for the middle class.

Associated links

Contacts

Follow the department on Twitter: @ISED_CA

Karl W. Sasseville
Press Secretary
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

Kelly Bennett
Communications Nova Scotia
902-717-0952
kelly.bennett@novascotia.ca


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