QUÉBEC, April 16, 2021 /CNW/ - Thanks to a joint investment of $86.77 million made as part of Canada–Quebec Operation High Speed, more than 10,640 households in the Outaouais region will have access to Bell high-speed Internet services by September 2022. The announcement was made today by Will Amos, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Science) and Member of Parliament for Pontiac; Stéphane Lauzon, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Seniors and Member of Parliament for Argenteuil–La Petite-Nation; Mathieu Lacombe, Quebec Minister of Families and Minister Responsible for the Outaouais Region and Member of the National Assembly for Papineau; Gilles Bélanger, Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier (high-speed Internet) and Member of the National Assembly for Orford; and Robert Bussière, Member of the National Assembly for Gatineau.
The investment announced will accelerate the deployment of reliable, high-performing infrastructure in the following municipalities:
La Vallée-de-la-Gatineau RCM:
Les Collines-de-l'Outaouais RCM:
Over the next few weeks, Bell will take an inventory of the target areas to ensure that no household will be left without service.
It should be noted that Bell will connect an additional 3,000 households in the Outaouais region as part of the Québec branché and Connect to Innovate programs.
Today, high-speed Internet services are considered essential in a modern society like Quebec's. Access to high-performing, reliable and affordable Internet services is now at the core of communities' socioeconomic development. The projects funded under Canada–Quebec Operation High Speed are a key part of the digital shift in Quebec and will promote access to telemedicine, distance learning, entertainment, online shopping and telework.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that it has never been more important to connect all Quebecers to high-speed Internet. That's why our government is investing to connect Outaouais households and businesses by fall 2022. With this historic announcement, and thanks to good collaboration with the Government of Quebec, we're increasing the potential for economic growth and helping improve quality of life for Quebecers in rural communities."
– Will Amos, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Science) and Member of Parliament for Pontiac
"This is excellent news for the Outaouais region and for rural Quebec as a whole. The pandemic has shown us how essential high-speed Internet access has become for our communities, not only for bringing people together virtually but also for working, studying and doing business. The Government of Canada understands that it is urgent and vital to connect communities in Quebec and Canada. We are proud to participate in this important project and will continue to invest and partner with the Government of Quebec to ensure each household and business has access to high-speed Internet."
– Stéphane Lauzon, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Seniors and Member of Parliament for Argenteuil–La Petite-Nation
"The announcement of Bell's deployment of high-speed Internet service is excellent news for our region. The investments announced are unprecedented and demonstrate the extent to which the deployment of high-speed Internet services in the regions is a priority for the Quebec government. This service has clearly become essential to not only ensure the economic development of the regions but also support the vitality of our communities. And the need has become more critical than ever during the pandemic. I am proud of our government's progress."
– Mathieu Lacombe, Quebec Minister of Families, Minister Responsible for the Outaouais Region and Member of the National Assembly for Papineau
"Our ambitious goal is to provide high-speed Internet access to the entire Quebec population by the fall of 2022. The partnership agreement with Bell will allow for the deployment of high-quality infrastructure in the Outaouais. We are investing heavily to make Quebec a leader in connectivity."
– Gilles Bélanger, Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier (high-speed Internet) and Member of the National Assembly for Orford
"I am excited by this announcement, which will allow the population of our region to benefit from fast, reliable, high-quality Internet service. Today more than ever, access to high-speed Internet is critical to the economic and social development of our communities. The major investments that Canada and Quebec are making together, in partnership with Bell, are proof of our determination to honour our commitment to provide all households in Quebec with access to this service."
– Robert Bussière, Member of the National Assembly for Gatineau
"Bell is proud to collaborate with the governments of Quebec and Canada, to help lead the way in this historic undertaking for Quebec, and to provide more households in the Outaouais region with access to Bell's fast, reliable Internet service. Building the best networks is at the heart of our strategy, and we are determined to transform how Quebecers communicate with each other and with the rest of the world."
– Charles Gosselin, Director of Government Affairs, Bell Canada
Newly connected households will have access to Bell's Fibe Internet, which offers the fastest residential Internet speeds available, and exclusive digital platforms such as Fibe TV.
Operation High Speed is a joint initiative of the governments of Canada and Quebec to connect 148,000 households, particularly through unprecedented agreements with six of the biggest telecommunications companies.
Operation High Speed will give Quebec the highest connectivity rate in Canada, at 99%.
To reach the goal of 100% connectivity in Quebec by fall 2022, approximately 36,000 households, for which no deployment plans have yet been established, will still need to be connected. These households are in areas that are particularly difficult to reach and sparsely populated. Technological solutions are currently being considered, and the strategy chosen to reach these households by September 2022 will be announced at a later date.
The Government of Canada has allocated billions of dollars to Internet infrastructure in rural and remote regions, including $1.75 billion as part of the Universal Broadband Fund.
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SOURCE Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
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