The UK Government has pledged to provide Britain with the "best broadband in Europe" by delivering superfast broadband to 90 per cent of properties by 2015, while the Welsh Government has signed a £425 million deal with BT to upgrade the network in Wales for 96 per cent of homes and businesses by 2015.
Regrettably, Monmouthshire has been badly served by broadband to date and this is an issue of real importance locally. Based on the number of complaints and cases I have been dealing with in recent months, there is clearly a long way to go and I remain unconvinced these amitious government targets will be met. Indeed, broadband associations have since been formed in communities across the constituency to try and seek a solution via a third party provider.
While the alternatives can be pricey, it may be possible to recuperate the installations costs via the Welsh Government's Broadband Support Scheme.
There is no doubt that poor broadband provision is damaging the economy of Wales and preventing investment in rural areas. Historically, the availability of broadband has been consistently lower in Wales than the rest of the UK. Although that gap has narrowed in recent years, latest figures show the difference between Wales and the UK has widened again.
In a report published in September 2012, the Welsh Affairs Committee (which I chair) found the existence of broadband "notspots and slowspots" in rural Wales has hindered the operations of existing businesses and deterred new businesses from choosing to locate here to the cost of the local economy.
Furthermore, the committee wants the Welsh and UK governments to work together and "use all means available" to improve internet connectivity speeds.
Access to fast internet connection is essential to businesses and the economy in Wales and it is hard to believe there are still some areas of the country with no connection at all. Quite simply, it is impossible to see how businesses or the economy can develop in these areas.
The roll-out of higher profile superfast broadband must not detract from the highest priority, namely that everyone has a good, useable connection.
Both governments should also consider promoting mobile and satellite technologies, particulary in remote areas of Wales, and not rely solely on rolling out fibre optic cabling. Indeed, I helped to bring high-speed satellite broadband to The Bryn Trading Post near Abergavenny earlier this year and I'm told it is working extremely well.