Ceredigion Liberal Democrats have condemned the decision by the Conservative UK Government to scale back rural broadband connectivity targets.
Senedd candidate Cadan ap Tomos believes prioritising high-speed broadband in rural areas is vital to grow Ceredigion's economy after the pandemic.
In last month’s Spending Review, Chancellor Rishi Sunak backtracked on the Conservatives' previous commitment to make broadband internet available to “every home” by 2025, instead promising 85% coverage by that date.
Furthermore, only £1.2 billion of the £5 billion support to operators, such as Openreach, for bringing gigabit connectivity to rural homes will now be made available before 2021.
Cadan ap Tomos, Ceredigion Liberal Democrat Senedd candidate, said:
"This pandemic has led to increased periods of working and learning at home for so many of us. This has stretched our already creaking broadband capacity to the brink.
“Conservatives made superfast broadband commitments a key part of their election campaign just twelve months ago, yet rural communities like ours are already being put at the bottom of the pile. It's just not good enough.
"This isn't just about watching Netflix without constant buffering. Poor broadband too often means people don't understand a lecture, miss a meeting or lose a business opportunity.
"As our reliance on technology and the internet increases, Ceredigion must not be left behind. If rural areas like ours aren't prioritised in the roll-out of faster broadband, it's our economy that will suffer the consequences."