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BT is to bring fibre broadband to another 200 communities across Scotland, in the next phase of the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme.

Up to 145,000 homes and businesses across the country are to benefit from super-fast connectivity, as Openreach engineers prepare to deploy next-generation network infrastructure.

The first connections in the latest locations - which include Aberdeenshire, Argus, Argyll and Bute, Edinburgh, Dumfries and Galloway, Dundee, East Ayrshire, East Renfrewshire, Fife, Glasgow, Highland, Inverclyde, Moray, North Ayrshire and North Lanarkshire - are expected to start to go live this Autumn.

BT is also lining up broadband upgrades for the Orkney Islands, Perth and Kinross, Renfrewshire, Scottish Borders, Shetland Islands, South Ayrshire, South Lanarkshire, Stirling, West Dunbartonshire and West Lothian during 2015.

Sara Budge, Programme Director for Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband, said it is "great" to be celebrating the first year of deployment of the £410 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme, while announcing that more exchanges will be included in future works.

"The project is developing a high-speed fibre network which is changing the face of broadband," she stated.

"By reaching out to those who would not have been covered through the commercial market - in towns and into some of our most rural areas - we are ensuring that the connections which are made will bring many benefits to the Scottish people at home and in business."

Brendan Dick, Director of BT Scotland, said the rollout of fibre broadband across Scotland is "one of the biggest and most complex civil engineering projects taking place in the UK today".

He claimed that BT is "proud" to be at the heart of it.

"It’s great to be announcing so many new locations this week as we celebrate our first, full year of deployment," he stated.

"In any project on this scale plans can change as engineering work progresses, for a variety of reasons. It’s important people understand that our plans aren’t set in stone but give the best possible forward view of where we expect to go next with the rollout."

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