FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — A study released by BC Stats finds high-speed internet services can have short and long-term benefits on the local and provincial economy.
According to the Ministry of Citizens’ Services, the Northern B.C. Connectivity Benefits study built on the study for the Kootenay region released in 2022 and echoes findings of positive economic impacts.
Better connectivity can bring residents in remote and rural communities better access to jobs, education, training and services, including healthcare.
The most recent study estimates the provincial government’s initial investment of $38.4 million toward improving connectivity in the north will yield seven times the return on investment, totalling $269 million in economic benefits.
The ministry said that number will equal an estimated long-term economic benefit of over $16,000 per person over 20 years.
Short-term benefits could include 195 new jobs in northern B.C.
The Northern B.C. Connectivity Benefits study is the second in a five-part series examining the economic benefit of connectivity in rural areas of B.C.