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BT is set to achieve its target of making super-fast broadband available to two-thirds of the UK 18 months ahead of schedule.

The broadband provider - which is investing £2.5 billion in pursuit of this coverage goal - originally set itself a deadline of the end of 2015 for project completion.

However, BT has announced another acceleration of its fibre rollout, which should see two-thirds of UK premises have access to super-fast broadband by spring 2014.

Culture Secretary Maria Miller has welcomed the announcement, describing fibre technology as "a major driver of economic growth".

"I am delighted to see BT make such good progress in helping to get the UK connected," she stated. "Connectivity is a key issue for people across the country whether in rural or urban areas."

Ms Miller expressed hope that BT will soon be able to fully focus on working with the public sector to extend fibre to the ‘final third’ of the country, in areas where it has won Broadband Delivery UK contracts.

She said this work will help the UK to "continue its climb up the broadband league tables", in line with the government’s vision of having the best super-fast broadband network among major European countries by 2015.

Upon completion of its current fibre broadband rollout, BT says around 19 million premises will have access to its fibre infrastructure.

Some 12 million premises have already been passed by the network, and the broadband provider says the rollout will soon overtake Virgin Media’s cable footprint.

Ian Livingston, Chief Executive at BT, commented that fibre is "at the heart of its broadband plans" for both town and country.

"We plan to step up our efforts yet again to complete our commercial fibre rollout early as this will allow us to focus even further on the next exciting stage of our fibre broadband strategy," he stated.

"This will see BT working hand in hand with the public sector to extend fibre broadband to UK homes and businesses in the ‘final third’ of the country that are harder to reach."

Liv Garfield, Openreach Chief Executive, said the fact it has been able to set an earlier target for completion is "a fantastic testament" to the ongoing hard work of its engineers.

"We look forward to welcoming many more engineers to Openreach over the coming months as we step up our recruitment drive to help connect fibre to more homes and businesses across the UK," she added.

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