The governments of Canada and Ontario announced over $61 million in combined funding for six projects by Bell Canada, the Northwestern Ontario Innovation Centre and Keewaytinook Okimakanak. This investment will bring high-speed internet access to more than 16,000 homes in 47 rural Ontario communities and three First Nations communities in Northern Ontario.

“We all know that internet is no longer a luxury in this day and age—it’s a necessity. Having fast, reliable internet helps rural Canadians by levelling the playing field to access essential services like health care and education, participate in the digital economy, or simply connect with loved ones. Our government will continue to work side by side with our partners to achieve our connectivity targets and ensure every Canadian, no matter where they live, has access to high-speed internet,” said Gudie Hutchings, Minister of Rural Economic Development.

The projects being announced today are part of an existing partnership between Ontario and Canada. On July 29, 2021, the governments announced a Canada–Ontario broadband partnership to support large-scale, fibre-based projects that will provide high-speed internet access to more than 280,000 households and businesses across the province. This historic agreement was made possible by a joint federal-provincial investment totalling more than $1.2 billion.

“Our government is making significant progress on our plan to bring reliable high-speed internet access to every community by the end of 2025. Through these projects, we are expanding high-speed internet access to more communities across Northern Ontario. In doing so, we are ensuring that people in these communities will have access to critical health services and will be able to learn and work online, participate in the agriculture sector, and connect with their loved ones,” said Kinga Surma, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure.

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“We are proud to partner with the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario to expand our all-fibre broadband network to even more communities in Ontario. Our fast and reliable internet connections help people in rural and remote communities stay connected at home and at work. Through our own fully funded investments and through partnerships like this, Bell continues to deliver on our goal of advancing how Canadians connect with each other and the world,” said Bruce Furlong, SVP Network, Bell Canada.

Featured image: (Canada Infrastructure Bank)

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