Affordable commercial property and good Internet are key reasons behind Newport being names Wales’ “top” city for starting a business in a recent study by Quality Formations.
Despite Newport being ranked 28th overall out of 69 cities nationwide the study reinforces business’ reliance on good Internet access, which the Welsh Government are trying encourage with the expansion of their two broadband voucher schemes.
The Access Broadband Cymru (ABC) and the Ultrafast Connectivity Voucher (UCV) have been designed to help businesses and homes in disadvantaged areas gain access to faster broadband. Both schemes have been modified as below:
- ABC will now be available to all homes and businesses across Wales which “currently do not have a superfast connection” (30Mbps+)
- ABC will now offer two levels of funding depending upon the Internet speed required. The first level will offer £400 for download speeds of 10Mbps+ and the second level will offer £800 for 30Mbps+. New connections through this scheme must deliver a step change in speed – with at least double your current download speeds (e.g. a current connection of 10Mbps must improve to at least 20Mbps).
- UCV is being opened up to businesses across Wales to help them meet the initial capital costs involved in installing ultrafast broadband services.
The updated schemes are available immediately and are scheduled to run until March 2018.
The new Ultrafast Connectivity Voucher from the Welsh Governement provides grant assistance of up to £10,000 for businesses in Enterprise and Local Growth Zones throughout Wales.
The voucher provides assistance towards the capital costs of installing a broadband service capable of at least 100Mpbs.
Welsh Government will provide 100% of funding on the first £3,000, then 50% between £3,001 and £17,000 and no further funding for costs of £17,001 and above.
Vouchers are available for businesses in the following areas:
• Teifi Valley Local Growth Zone (Teifi Valley Local Growth Zone boundaries are defined by ward boundaries)
• Powys Local Growth Zone (Powys Local Growth Zone boundary is defined by the county boundary of Powys)
• Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone
• Anglesey Enterprise Zone
• Deeside Enterprise Zone
• Ebbw Vale Enterprise Zone
• Snowdonia Enterprise Zone
• St Athan Enterprise Zone
* Businesses within Cardiff Central Enterprise Zone are not currently eligible to apply for the Ultrafast Connectivity Voucher (i.e. already covered by the other Connection Voucher scheme).
For more information on Ultrafast Connectivity Voucher click here