LA RONGE, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwired - July 24, 2015) - Industry Canada

Everyday tasks that were once done in person, such as shopping, communicating, learning and banking, are now done online. To help Canadians communities, businesses and families have better access to these and many other online opportunities, Rob Clarke, Member of Parliament for Desnethé-Missinippi-Churchill River, on behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Industry, today announced that the Government of Canada will provide Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SaskTel) with a total of $7.42 million to connect nearly 2,700 homes in northern Saskatchewan to faster Internet services.

This broadband infrastructure project is expected to be completed by the end of June 2017, delivering Internet download speeds at a minimum of five megabits per second (Mbps).

For all Canadians, the Internet is a tool that spurs economic growth, broadens opportunities and connects friends and family from coast to coast to coast. For Canadians who live in communities with slow or no Internet, access to high-speed services will lead to new economic opportunities and the creation of new jobs, products and services.

The Connecting Canadians program will extend or enhance high-speed Internet access at 5 Mbps to more than 356,000 households across Canada, exceeding the Economic Action Plan 2014 target by over 75,000 households.

Quick facts

  • The households to be connected in northern Saskatchewan under today's announcement are in the following communities and the surrounding areas:
    • Bear Creek, Black Lake, Brabant Lake, Dillon, Canoe Narrows, Clearwater River Dene Nation, Dore Lake, Far, Fond du Lac, Grandmother's Bay, Jans Bay, Missinipe, Patuanak, Red Earth, Shoal Lake, Sled Lake, Southend, Stanley Mission, St. George's Hill, Stony Rapids, Sucker River, Turnor Lake, Wadin Bay, Wahpeton, Waterhen Lake and Wollaston Lake.
  • Through Economic Action Plan 2014, the Government of Canada created the Connecting Canadians program, backed by a $305-million commitment to connect an additional 280,000 households in rural and remote regions of the country to high-speed Internet services at minimum speeds of 5 Mbps.
  • The Government has exceeded its Economic Action Plan 2014 target by over 75,000 households in the first round of project approvals, bringing high-speed Internet access to more than 356,000 homes across Canada, and nearly 40 percent under budget.
  • Last summer, the Government invited Canadians to provide feedback online to help better determine areas in need of high-speed Internet access. Once information was received, Industry Canada invited Internet service providers to submit proposals for funding under Connecting Canadians to build the wireless or wired infrastructure that will provide services to rural and remote communities in need.
  • The first projects are expected to be completed by the time Canada celebrates the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017.
  • Industry Canada received over 300 applications to the Connecting Canadians program from Internet service providers across Canada.
  • Every province and territory across the country will benefit from the Connecting Canadians program. Announcements of individual projects will be made throughout the summer.


"For rural and remote communities, like those in Desnethé-Missinippi-Churchill River, the opportunities represented by high-speed Internet service will lead to greater economic growth and prosperity for families. The Harper Government understands the needs of Canadians living in northern communities, and this investment will create new opportunities for businesses and Canadians in northern Saskatchewan."

- Rob Clark, Member of Parliament for Desnethé-Missinippi-Churchill River

"Today's announcement is another step towards the Government of Canada's goal of ensuring all Canadians have the opportunity to fully participate in the digital economy. Communities, families, farmers and local shop owners throughout northern Saskatchewan will soon benefit from this broadband expansion project and the advantages associated with high-speed Internet access."

- James Moore, Minister of Industry

"SaskTel is pleased to partner with the federal government to deliver high-speed connectivity to rural and remote communities in northern Saskatchewan. The Connecting Canadians program supports SaskTel's goal of bringing faster broadband speeds to our northern communities in order to provide equitable access to services such as communications, education, health, electronic commerce and entertainment."

- Jim Reiter, Minister Responsible for Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SaskTel), Province of Saskatchewan

Associated link

- Connecting Canadians website

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Contact Information:

Jake Enwright
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Industry

Media Relations
Industry Canada