The National Broadband Plan is not about bringing Netflix to rural Ireland, former Communications minister Denis Naughten has said.

Speaking on RTÉ's Saturday with Katie Hannon programme, Mr Naughten said there has been no change to the plan since October and that he is confident Minister Richard Bruton has gone through the plan in fine detail.

Mr Naughten resigned from his ministerial position last October amid reports he had held private dinners with US businessman David McCourt, a bidder for the broadband tender.

He said that when he was minister, he was aware of the figures being talked about, but that €3 billion is the ultimate potential cap and not necessarily the final figure.

Mr Naughten said it was the bidders that sought the State subsidy and that it was his understanding that the two companies who made a formal bid both sought in or around the same amount of subsidy.

He added that there was a misconception that the plan is simply about bringing Netflix to rural Ireland.

Mr Naughten said: "It's not about bringing Netflix to rural Ireland. This is about providing rural Ireland with the opportunity for high-speed broadband and network that's futureproofed for the next 35 years. It's about bringing foreign direct investment into rural Ireland, it's about creating jobs in rural Ireland and delivering very innovative healthcare in rural Ireland."

Mr Naughten also said he believed it would have been better if the plan had been approved last year and that contractors were ready to start work from January of this year.