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Archived - Improved High-Speed Internet Coming to Nunavut

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Minister Aglukkaq announces major investment that will extend and upgrade satellite Internet for 8,600 homes in Nunavut

July 7, 2015 – Arviat, Nunavut

Everyday tasks that were once done in person, such as shopping, communicating, learning and banking, are now done online. To help Canadians have better access to these and many other online opportunities, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, today announced that the Harper Government will provide $35 million to SSi Micro Ltd. to extend and enhance satellite Internet service for approximately 8,600 homes in Nunavut.

Communities that will benefit as a result of this Connecting Canadians investment include: Arctic Bay, Arviat, Baker Lake, Cambridge Bay, Cape Dorset, Chesterfield Inlet, Clyde River, Coral Harbour, Gjoa Haven, Grise Fiord, Hall Beach, Igloolik, Iqaluit, Kimmirut, Kugaaruk, Kugluktuk, Pangnirtung, Pond Inlet, Qikiqtarjuaq, Rankin Inlet, Repulse Bay, Resolute Bay, Sanikiluaq, Taloyoak and Whale Cove.

Canadians in these regions depend on satellite services for their high-speed Internet connections. The leases to provide these services expire in 2016. This funding under Connecting Canadians will ensure high-speed Internet remains available in these regions after 2016 while also greatly improving Internet speed for northerners.

Enhanced service will be available starting in 2016, delivering download speeds of at least three megabits per second (Mbps).

For Canadians who live in communities with slow or no Internet, access to high-speed services will lead to new economic opportunities and the creation of new jobs, products and services.

By Canada's 150th birthday in 2017, over 98 percent of Canadian households will be able to subscribe to new or improved high-speed Internet services, delivering on the Harper Government's commitment to rural Canadians.

Quick facts

  • Through Economic Action Plan 2014, the Government of Canada created the Connecting Canadians program, backed by a $305-million commitment to connect an additional 280,000 households in rural and remote regions of the country to high-speed Internet services at minimum speeds of 3 Mbps in the North.
  • The Government has exceeded its Economic Action Plan 2014 target by over 75,000 households in the first round of project approvals, bringing high-speed Internet access to more than 356,000 homes across Canada, and nearly 40 percent under budget.
  • Last summer, the Government invited Canadians to provide feedback online to help better determine areas in need of high-speed Internet access. Once information was received, Industry Canada invited Internet service providers to submit proposals for funding under Connecting Canadians to build the wireless or wired infrastructure that will provide services to rural and remote communities in need.
  • Industry Canada received over 300 applications to the Connecting Canadians program from Internet service providers across Canada.
  • Every province and territory across the country will benefit from the Connecting Canadians program. Announcements of individual projects will be made throughout the summer.

Quotes

"Our government is committed to improving the lives of citizens across the North. With this funding, we are taking another key step in our plan to increase Canadian broadband connectivity, providing remote communities in Nunavut with improved access to the Internet and the economic opportunities and potential it offers."

– Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council

"Today's announcement marks the next important phase in our government's plan to bring the benefits of high-speed Internet to communities in rural and remote regions across the country. Providing Canadians with access to high-speed Internet for learning, business opportunities and so much more is key to creating a more connected, digital Canada."

– James Moore, Minister of Industry

"SSi is excited to once again work with the Government of Canada to improve broadband in Nunavut. This major investment will bring in exciting new technologies, provide a massive upgrade to network capacity and allow enhanced broadband to benefit consumers in all 25 communities of the territory."

– Jeff Philipp, Founder and CEO, SSi Micro Ltd.

Associated link

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Contacts

Jake Enwright
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Industry
343-291-2500

Media Relations
Industry Canada
343-291-1777
media-relations@ic.gc.ca


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