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Improved broadband coverage in the UK countryside is vital for a prosperous rural economy, it has been claimed.

Liberal Democrat MP Dan Rogerson, who has been handed responsibility for broadband in remote areas by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, said there is a need for both fibre and 4G services.

Pointing to the recent launch of super-fast EE mobile broadband in Cumbria, he claimed similar rollouts are needed in other parts of the UK.

"The industry are our friends in achieving this [the Cumbria rollout] but also we can challenge them to find the business case in rural areas,” Mr Rogerson told V3.

“There is huge untapped potential in rural areas to deliver new jobs, new investment and training for young people. What’s been so encouraging in areas like this is to see the take-up from the community, as it proves people want it.”

He told the news provider that 4G broadband can "really plug the gaps" in areas where it is technically difficult or commercially unviable to deploy fibre networks.

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