Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Clare Curran says the work to make fibre broadband available to 87 per cent of New Zealanders by the end of 2022 is moving apace and is ahead of plan.\n\u201dIn total more than 1.25 million New Zealand households and businesses have access to UFB and 40 per cent of those who have access are actually connected. There was a 10 percent uptake in connections between September and December," says Curran, in a statement.\nShe points out the latest Quarterly Broadband Deployment update shows 506,075 users connected to UFB which is delivering close to 1,000 megabits per second at present.\n"By the end of 2022, 87 per cent of Kiwis in 390 towns and cities will be able to connect to fibre broadband."\nBroadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Clare Curran\nBy the end of 2022, 87 per cent of Kiwis in 390 towns and cities will be able to connect to fibre broadband\n\u201cNew Zealand is again building tremendous infrastructure. The people involved in this work are this generation\u2019s equivalent of those who built the bridges, dams and railways of the 20th century. They\u2019re providing the infrastructure for how we will live, work and play in future, and they are doing a great job."\nCurran says the programme is critical as the government wants to close the digital divides by 2020, and to make ICT the second biggest exporting sector by 2025.\n"We know it\u2019s going to take more than what is already planned to ensure we reach those goals so all New Zealanders have connectivity. We\u2019ll focus on the harder to reach areas and I\u2019ll be looking not just at access but at how quickly connectivity can be delivered to rural and isolated areas."\n\u201cConnectivity to rural communities is just as important as it is in urban centres," she states.\nThe next goal for rural communities \u2013 the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI2) \u2013 is to deliver new or improved broadband to 70,000 additional rural households and businesses.\nMore than a thousand kilometres of state highways and in excess of a hundred tourism locations will receive new mobile coverage,\u201d says Curran.\nSign up forCIO newsletters for regular updates on CIO news, career tips, views and events.Follow CIO New Zealand on Twitter:@cio_nzJoin us on Facebook.