Re: 2 Megabits per second?
Starting from nothing? Not that much more. Have you not seen a lot of the longer-reach broadband technology available now?
If you're going to do something, make sure you don't need to do it again in 10 year's time. 2Mbit is unacceptable to the majority of the country now. People have had 8Mbit as a minimum for quite a while now. And now you have usages that extend past just downloading a picture faster.
When I was living at home, we went from 56K modems direct to 8Mbit. It was literally like that with early broadband. Nowadays, ADSL2+ is pretty minimal and basic and those who want more are going fibre or combining lines. Joe Bloggs can now get 100Mbit if he wants it without even getting close to a 10Mbit leased line (and therein lies the real cost - the back-end bandwidth for all the users back to a central point).
The problem is that if you spend billions, you want your investment to pay off. Nobody is going to buy a 2Mbit line in the areas currently deprived of broadband. And in five year's time? Hell, five years ago my connection was less than a third of what it is now and I paid no extra (the ISP just knocked me up onto their next offering as a straggler), so they'd STILL be behind the times.
Of course rural broadband will never be on the cutting edge. But it's pointless to deploy anything that will be obsolete the second it's in the ground. Better to save your money, wait another year, and deploy something better (i.e. the longer-reach DSL alternatives that still work perfectly fine over copper but aren't "industry-standard" offerings).
But the real reason for the holdback is that the back-ends need upgrading, which is expensive. One backend in London might do a street, one backend in Scotland might do a vast swathe of countryside incorporating just as many houses. But if you don't upgrade them to the same level on a regular basis, the Highland backend is "connected" but worthless.