WiFi4EU scheme open to councils – Ní Riada

Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada is urging councils across Ireland to apply for the WiFi4EU scheme.

The Ireland South MEP, who was lead negotiator on the project, was speaking as it was announced that the initiative is now open for applications.

The scheme will see up to €15,000 be available to local councils to install free public Wi-Fi hotspots in communities across the EU.

“I am delighted that this scheme is finally open for applications,” she said.

“It is a fantastic development for citizens throughout Europe and as it is being delivered on a first come first served basis I would urge as many Irish councils as possible to register for it.

“It will be particularly advantageous for rural towns and villages in Ireland, which have been internet blackspots for years, and will hopefully encourage the Government to live up their repeated promises to roll out Broadband schemes across rural Ireland.

“As rapporteur of this initiative in the European Parliament I am proud to have been able to play my part in making the roll-out of Wifi4EU a reality.

“I am urging as many people as possible to log on to www.wifi4eu.eu and begin the process of applying for the scheme. My office is of course open to anyone who wants to get in touch for more information on it or for help with applications.

“However, I would caution that this scheme, while invaluable to the communities and businesses it will reach, is only a first step. Access to the internet is now as fundamental a right as access to electricity or water; if the Government is to fulfill its responsibilities then it must live up to its commitments on rolling out high speed broadband out to every corner of the country.”

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