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Labour pledges free broadband for all UK homes and businesses

Labour pledges free broadband for all UK homes and businesses

The Labour Party has pledged to give every home and business in the UK free broadband if it wins the general election.

The major announcement was made by Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell, who said that the party would nationalise part of BT in order to deliver the policy, while taxing tech giants. The policy will officially be announced by Jeremy Corbyn in Lancaster on Friday.

The broadband would be free, full-fibre, and would be rolled out by 2030 UK-wide if Labour won the election, according to the party.

Broadband packages in the UK cost households around £360 a year on average - a potentially large amount to be saved if Labour's scheme was rolled out. The pledge has been described in the media as “one of the biggest announcements of this election campaign.”

The announcement goes beyond the current promise by the Conservatives to invest £5bn into full-fibre broadband by 2025 - a service that only 7% of the UK currently has access to, according to a report from Ofcom.

Openreach and Free Broadband have started trending on Twitter following the announcement.

The policy is expected to be popular, and the pledge comes at a time where Labour is behind the Conservatives in the polls. Nicky Morgan, the former culture secretary has claimed that Labour’s pledge to provide free Wi-Fi is “reckless”.

 

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