01/30/2013 10:57 EST | Updated 04/01/2013 05:12 EDT

SaskTel invests in high-speed network, plans to expand to First Nations

REGINA - Dozens of First Nations in Saskatchewan can expect better Internet service and more extensive coverage, though it's not known how soon.

SaskTel has announced a $400 million investment to create a new high-speed data network for the province.

The service expansion will be launched in the major cities on Thursday and will be expanded to other cities across the province throughout the year.

SaskTel President Ron Styles says the plan is to expand the enhanced fibre optic network to the province’s 88 First Nations reserves.

However, Styles could not give an exact time frame as to when it will happen.

SaskTel Minister Don McMorris says the growing economy along with increased demand will be accommodated by the new network.

Over a five-year period from 2008 until 2013, SaskTel has spent about $1 billion to upgrade its high-speed network.