A £10m contract to provide ultra-fast fibre broadband to the entire Isle of Man has been awarded to Manx Telecom.
The deal with the government is part of the National Telecoms Strategy (NTS) approved by Tynwald in October 2018.
Under the contract, the company would be responsible for ensuring broadband is supplied in rural areas that would ordinarily be “commercially unviable”.
Only about 25% of premises on the island currently have access to high-speed fibre broadband.
The NTS aims to increase that to 99% in the next five years.
Enterprise minister Lawrence Skelly said responding to the coronavirus pandemic had delayed progress but the deal was a “major milestone”.
He added that reliable internet was “more important than ever” with homes and businesses increasingly relying on it during the outbreak.