The UK is set to top the league of broadband-enabled G7 nations by the end of this year, according to a report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
While it is unlikely that the UK will lead the G7 nations in terms of high-speed broadband connections - this is likely to go to a country such as Japan, which has services offering download speeds up to a whopping 26Mbps - the UK will head the group in terms of DSL broadband availability both at the end of this year and 2005.
First place will almost certainly go to Japan, which has services offering download speeds up to a whopping 26Mbps.
BT welcomed the report, entitled The Development of Broadband Access in Rural and Remote Areas, which looked at broadband availability across the G7 countries both now and next year.
The telco said that the UK will have 95 per cent population availability of its ADSL product by the end of this year, and 99 per cent by the summer of 2005, which leads other countries.
"The US has only pledged to have a 90 per cent rollout by 2007," said a BT spokesman.
BT also praised what it called the "phenomenal effect" that local rural campaigners have had in stimulating demand for broadband services across the UK.
"There is more work to be done on establishing broadband take up and we can now concentrate on improving demand for these services," explained the spokesman.
Welcoming the OECD report, BT chief broadband officer Alison Ritchie added: "This report fully reflects BT's plans to make broadband available to all.
"This recognition is great news for UK plc as well as for BT, other broadband companies, government and local partnership initiatives, and customers."
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