A new fibre optic cable has been commissioned to run through parts of Galway and Mayo to improve broadband access.

The 130-kilometre line will run along a gas pipeline that travels from the Corrib Gas terminal at Bellanaboy, Co Mayo to Athenry, Co Galway.

The cable will run along ducting that was installed at a cost of over €5m to the State when the pipe was being laid by Bord Gáis in recent years.

The fibre optic cable is being installed by Shell and the company said it will then hand over the line to the State.

In turn, the Department of Communications will oversee the process where the line will be serviced by telecom companies offering broadband.

The Shell to Sea campaign has dismissed the announcement by Shell that it will pay for the installation of the line.

The group said the €750,000 cost that would be incurred by the company was minuscule when compared with "the billions of euro worth of gas that was gifted to them in the Corrib gas field".