Ultra-fast broadband is being extended to 25 more towns in the Waikato, Communications Minister Simon Bridges announced on Thursday.
It's part of Prime Minister Bill English and Minister Bridges' launch of the second, $300m phase of the Government's UFB programme.
It will see fibre rolled out to 151 towns as well as 43 suburban fringe areas around larger centres that weren't covered by the first phase of the Government's UFB programme.
In a statement, Bridges said the $67.9m investment in the UFB extension programme for the Waikato reflects the Government's broader focus on growing and diversifying regional economies.
"Connectivity is critical to our regional economies and to New Zealand's future," he said.
"Fibre has already been deployed in Hamilton, Taupo, Cambridge, Tokoroa and Te Awamutu under the first phase of UFB. Once the UFB extension is completed, over 90,000 people in small towns across Waikato will be able to experience the same world-class broadband as Kiwis living in larger centres, and tap into the benefits.
"This means more productive businesses, improvements to health care through video-conferencing between doctors, specialists and patients, and improved access to online resources for students and teachers.
"Once the full UFB programme is complete, more than 335,000 people in the Waikato will be able to access UFB."
Towns in the Waikato to receive access to fibre under the programme include Waihi, Morrinsville, Matamata, Ngaruawahia and Thames, among others.
Who gets UFB?
The Government plan pictured below shows the areas to receive UFB followed by the contractor, the projected population for 2023, the estimated completion date, the population as a percentage and the associated local authority.