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QUÉBEC - Thanks to a $9.5-million joint investment made as part of Canada–Quebec Operation High Speed, 1,020 households in the Mauricie region will have access to high-speed Internet services by September 2022.

The announcement was made today by the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry and Member of Parliament for Saint-Maurice–Champlain; Gilles Bélanger, Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier of Quebec (high-speed Internet) and Member of the National Assembly for Orford; Marie-Louise Tardif, Member of the National Assembly for Laviolette–Saint-Maurice; and Charles Beaudet, Xplornet's Vice-President, Quebec.

Xplornet will receive $ 5.73 million to support the deployment of high-speed Internet services to 1,020 homes. The investments announced will accelerate the deployment of reliable and efficient infrastructures in the municipalities of La Bostonnais, La Tuque and Lac-Édouard.

Over the next few months, Xplornet will take an inventory of the targeted regions to ensure that no household will be left without service.

High-speed Internet services are considered indispensable in a modern society like Quebec's. Access to high-performance, reliable and affordable Internet services is at the core of our communities' socio-economic development. The projects funded under Canada–Quebec Operation High Speed are a key part of the digital shift in Quebec and will promote access to telemedicine, distance learning, entertainment, online shopping and telework.

Quotes

"The people of the Mauricie region, as in other Quebec regions, absolutely need reliable connectivity. The COVID-19 crisis has shown the importance of having access to broadband digital services. By investing in these high-speed Internet projects in the region, we're helping bridge the digital divide, stimulate economic growth and create jobs."
– The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry and Member of Parliament for Saint-Maurice–Champlain

"Our ambitious goal is to provide high-speed Internet access to the entire Quebec population by September 2022. The partnership agreement with Xplornet will allow for the deployment of high-quality infrastructure in the Mauricie region. We are investing heavily to make Quebec a leader in connectivity."
– Gilles Bélanger, Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier of Quebec (high-speed Internet) and Member of the National Assembly for Orford

"The pandemic has made high-speed Internet essential to our day-to-day lives. The investments announced are unprecedented and demonstrate the extent to which the Quebec government is making this file a priority. Reliable and efficient services are a key part of our region's economic development and vitality."
– Marie-Louise Tardif, Member of the National Assembly for Laviolette–Saint-Maurice

"The investments will help create sustainable jobs and a dynamic economy, which will benefit all of Quebec. Xplornet supports the governments of Canada and Quebec in their commitment to quickly connect all Quebec homes, and we are very proud to be a part of this important historic effort. We look forward to starting work in the Mauricie region."
– Charles Beaudet, Xplornet's Vice-President, Quebec

Quick facts

  • Operation High Speed is a joint initiative of the governments of Canada and Quebec that aims to connect 148,000 households, particularly through unprecedented agreements with six of the biggest telecommunications companies.
  • Operation High Speed will give Quebec the highest connectivity rate in Canada, at 99%.
  • To reach the goal of 100% connectivity in Quebec by fall 2022, approximately 36,000 households, for which no projects are planned, will still need to be connected. These households are in areas that are particularly difficult to reach and sparsely populated. Technological solutions are currently being considered, and the strategy chosen to reach these households by September 2022 will be announced at a later date.
  • The Government of Canada has allocated billions of dollars to Internet infrastructure in rural and remote regions, including $2.75 billion as part of the Universal Broadband Fund, of which $1 billion comes from Budget 2021.
  • Headquartered in Woodstock, New Brunswick, Xplornet Communications Inc. is one of Canada's leading broadband service providers. For over a decade, Xplornet has been providing innovative fixed and mobile broadband solutions to rural customers at work, home and play across Canada. Today, Xplornet offers voice and data communication services through its unique hybrid fibre wireless and satellite network that connects Canadians to what matters.

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SOURCE Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

For further information: Marie-Pier Baril, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development, 613-295-8123, marie-pier.baril@cfc-swc.gc.ca; Media Relations, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, 343-291-1777, ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic@canada.ca; Antoine Tousignant, Media Relations Lead, Ministère du Conseil exécutif du Québec, 418-999-3029; Alexandra Roy, Political Attaché, Office of the Premier of Quebec, 819-212-0459 (cell); Johanne Senécal, Vice-President, Government Relations and Public Affairs, Xplornet Communications Inc., 613-227-7682, johanne.senecal@corp.xplornet.com