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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S5W-36209
Asked by: Emma Harper, South Scotland, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 11 March 2021

Question

To ask the Scottish Government (a) how many and (b) what percentage of (i) households and (ii) business premises have had access to superfast broadband in each year since 2014, broken down by local authority.

Current status: Answered by Paul Wheelhouse on 24 March 2021


Answer

The Scottish Government, alongside our partners in the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband (DSSB) programme, has played a key role in extending the reach of fibre broadband across Scotland. Independent broadband analysis site, thinkbroadband (the same site the UK Government quotes in its own figures), states that 94.6% of premises across Scotland are now able to access superfast broadband speeds of 30Mbps and above – up from just 59.3% in 2014, when DSSB deployment began.

Unfortunately, the Scottish Government does not hold the information you have requested. As telecoms regulator, Ofcom produces figures for numbers of properties in Scotland able to access superfast broadband - of 30 Megabits per second (30Mbps) and above - by year.

Unfortunately, the figures provided do not break down between residential and business properties and, on a directly comparable basis, only go as far back as 2017:

Year

Properties with superfast coverage (30Mbps+)

2020

2,581,836

2019

2,573,289

2018

2,563,554

2017

2,276,309

Ofcom’s Connected Nations annual reports for 2019 and 2020 provide information on coverage percentages across residential and commercial properties in Scotland, as set out in the table below:

Year

Superfast coverage in residential properties (%)

Superfast coverage in commercial properties (%)

2020

94

83

2019

92

83

Prior to 2019, these reports outline coverage percentages by non-SME properties and SME properties:

Year

Superfast coverage in non-SME properties (%)

Superfast coverage in SME properties (%)

2018

92

86

2017

87

78

2016

83

72

More information can be found on Ofcom’s website at https://www.ofcom.org.uk/research-and-data/multi-sector-research/infrastructure-research/connected-nations-2020 .

Independent analysis site, thinkbroadband, provides coverage breakdowns by percentage, but does not break figures down along SME/non-SME lines:

 

Superfast coverage (30Mbps and above)

 

Local Authority

2014

March 2021

Increase

Aberdeen City

71.6%

96.9%

25.3

Aberdeenshire

16.6%

84.1%

67.5

Angus

58.8%

89.4%

30.6

Argyll & Bute

0.9%

84.6%

83.7

City of Edinburgh

90.5%

98.8%

8.3

Clackmannanshire

54.2%

98.0%

43.8

Dumfries & Galloway

17.0%

87%

70

Dundee City

95.2%

99.2%

4

East Ayrshire

48.5%

95.9%

47.4

East Dunbartonshire

77.6%

98.2%

20.6

East Lothian

31.9%

92.6%

60.7

East Renfrewshire

84.6%

98.5%

13.9

Falkirk

85.2%

97.7%

12.5

Fife

52.9%

96.8%

43.9

Glasgow City

75.2%

98.7%

23.5

Highland

20.3%

82.1%

61.8

Inverclyde

72.0%

97.7%

25.7

Midlothian

44.0%

94.3%

50.3

Moray

6.9%

88.1%

81.2

Na h-Eileanan an Iar (Outer Hebrides)

1.3%

79%

77.7

North Ayrshire

40.9%

97%

56.1

North Lanarkshire

77.3%

98.8%

21.5

Orkney Islands

11.1%

65.9%

54.8

Perth & Kinross

39.3%

87.4%

48.1

Renfrewshire

76.7%

98.2%

21.5

Scottish Borders

20.8%

88.7%

67.8

Shetland Islands

28.9%

75.2%

46.3

South Ayrshire

44.9%

94.8%

49.9

South Lanarkshire

70.2%

96.5%

26.3

Stirling

56.5%

92.2%

35.7

West Dunbartonshire

88.7%

99.3%

10.6

West Lothian

63.0%

98.1%

35.1