Economic impacts include £314m in productivity benefits, £69m from a widened workforce, and £1m in Local Authority savings.
A new report commissioned by CityFibre, the UK’s largest independent carrier-neutral Full Fibre platform, has identified that Norwich stands to be a huge beneficiary from the rollout of future-proof Full Fibre infrastructure which is now well underway across the city.
The study by the consultancy Hatch, (Economic Impact of Full Fibre Infrastructure from CityFibre’s Network), estimates that, over a fifteen-year period, the positive impacts of CityFibre’s £50m investment in Norwich will include £314m in productivity and innovation gains, £69m from a widened workforce, £1m in Local Authority efficiency savings and £245m in increased housing value.
Technological benefits are also a major focus of the report, which demonstrates that CityFibre’s network in Norwich will help realise £749m in gross added value (GVA) from 5G services, £235m from the Internet of Things and £133m from Smart City initiatives, like intelligent traffic management systems and street lighting.
The continuing transition to home and flexible working, supported by Full Fibre access at home and in the office, is also unlocking access to a larger pool of labour for employers. In Norwich, working productivity uplifts are estimated to exceed £18m.
The direct impact of network construction is also identified as a major contributor of Norwich’s economic growth, creating network construction jobs within CityFibre’s build partners and supply chain. Wherever possible, the new jobs will be recruited locally to support the rollout.
The UK, as a whole, stands to benefit from over £38bn in potential economic benefits. Productivity improvements and innovation are responsible for the largest impact, driving more than £22bn in GVA gains nationwide. This is due to the positive effect that far faster and more reliable digital connectivity has been shown to have on business productivity and innovation, increasing turnover and contributing to the formation of new businesses and business models.
Charlie Kitchin, Area Manager for Norwich at CityFibre, said: “This report demonstrates just how powerful and essential Full Fibre is as a catalyst for growth and a platform for innovation and investment. We’re extremely proud of our rollout in Norwich, and we look forward to seeing how it will benefit residents and businesses over the decades to come.”
Councillor Alan Waters, Leader of Norwich City Council, added: “It’s vital for Norwich residents and business to have access to fast and reliable internet, and it’s extremely encouraging to read the reported future economic benefits that the new full-fibre infrastructure will bring to the city.
“Norwich is an amazing place for people to live, work in and enjoy and investment in its digital future is paramount to achieving one of the five key ambitions in our 2040 vision for the city: a connected city.”