Chris Elmore MP has joined with a group of 56 cross-party colleagues to call on the Culture Secretary, Matt Hancock MP, to take action on rural mobile connectivity.
Expressing concern about progress to date, the group of MPs are calling for a legally binding coverage obligation imposed on all four major operators to support the Department for Digital, Media, Culture and Sport’s stated ambition to deliver mobile coverage to 95% of UK geographic landmass by the end of 2022.
Mr Elmore commented: “If this target is met it could add up to £75 billion to our GDP. The government must ensure that all of our communities are connected – we can’t just have sound bites and no action on this issue.”
The letter was coordinated by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Rural Business, of which Mr Elmore has been a long-standing member since he was first elected.
The MPs’ collective action follows a report by the Country Land and Business Association (CLA) last month, which revealed that in 2015, 2016 and 2017 mobile network operators have been failing to submit applications for new masts to improve mobile coverage in some of the rural areas with the worst 4G coverage.