The news over the weekend that the European Union can be forgotten as a force for funding widespread broadband roll-outs to meet its 2020 Digital Agenda targets appears to have only registered a small whimper at the DCMS according to a quote on The Register.
"It remains important that the EU agrees an affordable budget which reflects the current fiscal position faced by Member States. The UK does not support unaffordable increases in spending. The commission had interesting proposals for the €9.2bn CEF but the government has not developed any future broadband plans on the assumption that it would go ahead."Quote from DCMS supplied to The Register
Maybe we are being cynical but while the UK has announced a fund of some £300m to be available for broadband spending in the period 2015-2017 no plans have been published on how it will be spent. The BDUK itself currently expires in 2015, whether a BDUK2 will appear to administer this money is unclear and given the time it has taken for the BDUK to actually deliver a working connection, the UK Government needs to start the planning process now.
If the future is digital and we do not want the whole UK to look like a shabby high street store that is trading on past success then the Government no matter which party is in power needs to make investment in broadband infrastructure an attractive prospect and at all levels from the grass roots community solutions, to dynamic small companies and the massive telecoms companies. There is no one solution and alas currently this is what the BDUK process has resulted in.