The Programme for a Partnership Government committed to the establishment within 100 days of a mobile phone and broadband taskforce which will consider immediate measures to address telecommunications deficits in rural Ireland.
The Mobile Phone and Broadband Taskforce was established in July 2016. The role of the Taskforce was to examine solutions to address broadband/mobile phone coverage deficits and to identify tangible actions that can be taken to improve the quality of broadband and mobile voice services being provided to citizens across Ireland.
The Taskforce Report was published in December 2016, which sets out recommendations and 40 actions to alleviate barriers to mobile reception and broadband access. The Taskforce identified a number of areas where direct action by Government Departments and State Agencies can ensure accelerated benefits to consumers from industry investments.
Actions outlined in the report focus on optimising network performance, improving consistency in relation to planning procedures, enhancing access to infrastructure, engaging with stakeholders on issues impacting on the rollout of telecommunications infrastructure, and equipping consumers to make informed decisions on available products and services.
An Implementation Group has been established to oversee the timely implementation of all actions in the Taskforce Report. The Taskforce Implementation Group brings together all key stakeholders identified in the Taskforce report with responsibility for delivery of actions. The Group will play a vital role in monitoring and driving progress, to ensure the full delivery of all actions recommended by the Taskforce.
- Minutes of Meeting 1: 8 March 2017
- Minutes of Meeting 2: 5 July 2017
- Minutes of Meeting 3: 22 November 2017
- Minutes of Meeting 4: 31 January 2018
- Minutes of Meeting 5: 25 April 2018
The Implementation Group will formally report every 90 days to both Ministers, who will in turn jointly brief Government on progress made. Each quarterly progress report will be published on this page.
National Stakeholder Forum
Action 1 of the Taskforce Report commits to holding “an annual forum for all stakeholders to discuss issues impacting on the rollout of telecoms infrastructure”. The Department of Rural and Community Development and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment were jointly tasked with organising the event. The Forum took place on Friday, 6 October 2017 in Athlone.
National Stakeholder Forum 2018
The positive effect of last year’s Forum has been invaluable, going above and beyond what was originally anticipated by the two Departments. As a result, although originally meant as a once-off event, the Forum is now an annual event to ensure that key stakeholders have an opportunity to meet and engage.
The second National Stakeholder Forum will take Friday 12 October 2018 in Ballinasloe, Co. Galway. The agenda for the day is as below:
|Introduction by the moderator, Jess Kelly (Radio and TV Broadcaster) and Opening address by Minister of State Kyne||10.00-10.10|
|Keynote Speaker: John Kennedy, Editor, Silicon Republic||10.10-10.30|
|Closing Thoughts from the Moderator||13.00-13.10|
|Closing Speaker Minister Naughten||13.10-13.25|
This year’s event will be live streamed and can be viewed at following link: View stream.
Viewers are invited to direct questions to the panel members via Twitter at #MPBT2018.