BT only bidder in two slots of £600m broadband plan

The Scottish Government said on Thursday that BT plc has been confirmed as the only bidder for two of the three areas under its new £600m R100 (Reaching 100%) broadband programme in Scotland.
Procurement was split into three areas – North, Central and South – and BT plc was the only bidder for the Central and South areas.

Further details of the bid will be announced when the contracts are signed later this year.

More than one bid was received for the North area and an announcement of the preferred bidder will be made in due course.

Scotland’s Minister for Connectivity Paul Wheelhouse said: “Our £600 million R100 programme is a vital investment in Scotland’s infrastructure, given that the UK-wide telecommunications market has failed to deliver coverage to large areas of Scotland.

“Our commitment is despite regulation and legislation for telecommunications being reserved matters that are the responsibility of UK Ministers and this commitment is unmatched anywhere else in the UK.

“It will help to deliver a future-proofed superfast broadband network, making Scotland one of the best connected places anywhere in Europe.

“I am pleased that good progress on tender evaluation has been made and look forward to the process being completed, and contracts signed by the end of the year.

“More than one bid was received for the North and an announcement of the preferred bidder will be made in due course.
“The Scottish Government has committed £579 million, or 96.5%, to the total cost of the programme, even though broadband is a UK Government responsibility.

“The UK Government will contribute just £21 million, or 3.5%, despite the Commons Scottish Affairs Select Committee suggesting UK Ministers should contribute more.”

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Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.