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ISP investment in building fast broadband networks could stall even though the UK economy would benefit from a full-fibre roll-out, an influential advisory group warned today.
The Broadband Stakeholder Group report said the cost of building an all-fibre network, which could deliver speeds of 100mbps to homes and businesses, would reach £16bn, but that the economic benefits to the UK would exceed this figure.
However, the report said that ISP investment in building networks could stall because there was uncertainty about how fast providers would recoup their investment.
“There is still real uncertainty about the extent to which investors will be able to realise enough of this value to justify investment,” said the report.
The report recommended that providers, government and regulators work together to create find a way to encourage investment in time or else the UK could lose out.
“The UK cannot wait too long,” said Antony Walker, CEO of the Broadband Stakeholder Group. “If widespread network deployment does not happen in the medium term - perhaps three to five years - then this report suggests that the UK could be losing out.”