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ABC Communications

Improved high-speed Internet benefits Copper Creek residents

KAMLOOPS - Over 500 residences and businesses in Copper Creek will be better able to access faster Internet speeds, thanks to the B.C. government's $101,963 investment in a new connectivity project that will soon get underway by ABC Communications.

Local Internet service provider ABC Communications will match the Province's funding for a total investment of $203,926. The provincial portion is being provided through the Connecting British Columbia program, administered by Northern Development Initiative Trust. Over 500 rural households and businesses will have better opportunities to learn, do business, access services and stay connected through ABC's technology upgrades and network coverage expansion. ABC's project builds on its previous high-speed wireless deployments launched in 2014, and complements other Internet improvements being made by other Internet service providers operating in the wider region.

Connecting British Columbia is a multi-year grant program to support new and upgraded backbone and last-mile infrastructure projects in rural and remote communities in B.C. to drive innovation, regional growth and the creation of new jobs. The program can be used for new Internet connections and to upgrade existing Internet connections, for local Internet infrastructure builds and for new pathways.

As part of its Rural Economic Development Strategy, the Province recently announced a further investment of $40 million to the Connecting British Columbia program for a total of $50 million, to help regional Internet service providers, Aboriginal organizations, local governments, and other organizations to expand or enhance Internet connectivity in currently unconnected and underserved areas of B.C.

This additional funding aligns with the Province's #BCTECH Strategy to bring the province closer to 100% high-speed connectivity and help eligible B.C.-based Internet service providers leverage the new federal $500-million Connect to Innovate program to maximize funding available for rural connectivity projects.

Quotes:
Terry Lake, MLA for Kamloops-North Thompson -
"We're helping ABC improve wireless high-speed Internet access in Copper Creek, near Kamloops, by investing $101,963 through the Connecting British Columbia program. These upgrades will make it easier for residents to stay connected, so they can access government services, online education and business opportunities now and in the future."

Joel McKay, Northern Development Initiative Trust CEO -
"Northern Development is proud to partner with the Province in the delivery of broadband Internet services to more than 500 customers in the rural community of Copper Creek. This project provides the necessary infrastructure to allow new opportunities for community and economic development."

Bob Allen, ABC Communications CEO -
"We see an ever-increasing demand for video services over our networks - with these expansions we will be able to deliver these services to our customers more affordably. By bringing 4G LTE to rural Kamloops, we're providing the community with the next wireless broadband standard for wireless Internet service providers in Canada."

Quick Facts:
* Under the Connecting British Columbia program, nearly $10 million has been allocated to more than 25 projects that will improve or expand Internet services in over 200 communities around the province.

* To date, more than 40,000 households have benefited from the Connecting British
Columbia program.

Learn More:
Connecting British Columbia program: http://www.northerndevelopment.bc.ca/fundingprograms/business-development/connecting-british-columbia

#BCTECH Strategy: http://bctechstrategy.gov.bc.ca

Rural Economic Development Strategy:
https://bcjobsplan.gov.bc.ca/app/uploads/sites/21/2017/03/BCRED_Strategy_FINAL.pdf

ABC Communications: https://www.abccommunications.com

Northern Development Initiative Trust: http://www.northerndevelopment.bc.ca

Interactive and searchable map showing broadband availability in B.C.:
http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/about-the-bcgovernment/communications-technology/internet-in-bc/network-bc-connectivity-map

Download the press release

For Immediate Release 2017MTICS0020-001065 April 5, 2017

Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens' Services Northern Development Initiative Trust