The Welsh Government can now obtain formal approval of its Next Generation Broadband for Wales Scheme from the UK Government, which is expected shortly.
The Welsh Government is seeking to ensure that all residential premises and businesses in Wales have access to next generation broadband by 2015 and will intervene in areas where the private sector is not investing.
Total public funding of £205million to deliver this strategic project for Wales includes £56.9m from the UK Government and £89.5m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). .
Welcoming today’s approval, Mrs Hart said:
"I am delighted the EC has given the go-ahead for state aid to be used for next generation broadband in the UK. We have made a firm commitment in our Programme for Government to ensure all properties in Wales have access to next-generation broadband by 2015.
"The project will transform the broadband landscape across Wales, ensuring we are at the forefront of the global digital economy and among the most connected countries in Europe.
"The availability of robust high-speed broadband is essential for our businesses and residential properties to access the services and opportunities provided by digital technologies. Once we receive go-ahead from the UK Government and complete the remaining approval for ERDF funding, we will be able to start work on our next generation broadband project."