THE NBN AND BILL SHORTEN’S FANTASY ECONOMICS > Mitch Fifield, Liberal Senator for Victoria


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Senator The Hon Mitch Fifield


13 June 2016

Today’s announcement is ground hog day with the NBN – Labor are again promising ‘free’ technology upgrades, this time around 2 million Australians will apparently get fibre-to the-premises (FTTP).

The last time the NBN looked at how much it would cost to do Labor’s FTTP rollout, NBN found it would cost around $30 billion more and would take six to eight years longer.

Now Labor are out today saying that there will be little additional cost and that Labor’s roll out will be finished at roughly the same time - it’s a magic pudding!

“Shortennomics” strikes again. 

Everyone remembers what happened only three years ago when Labor last mismanaged the NBN.

After six years and $6.5 billion, Labor had connected just 51,000 premises nationwide to an active NBN service. Under the Coalition, the NBN now connects more than 60,000 paying customers per month.

Today’s announcement by Labor confirms that:

·       Australians will wait longer – Mr Shorten said Labor’s NBN would be completed by June 2022, which means homes and businesses will have to wait more than two years longer for the NBN.

·       Australians will pay more – With a new price tag of $57 billion, Labor’s gold-plated policy is    $8 billion more than the Coalition’s current peak funding projection of $49 billion. A price rise that will ultimately be passed on to households and businesses monthly internet bills.

Right now, under the Coalition’s rollout plan, every home and business in Australia knows they will get the NBN by 2020.

Under the Coalition, a rigorous cost benefit analysis found $16 billion in additional benefits to the public, including $6 billion which was attributable to getting the project completed sooner.

Under Labor’s changes, they can’t tell us how long people are going to have to wait and how much it will cost the economy to do so.

The NBN has met all its rollout targets under the Coalition, having connected more premises in the past four weeks than Labor connected in six years.

Last time Labor were trusted with rolling out the NBN, many of the delivery partners were either asking for more money or had pulled out of the project, they missed their rollout forecasts by 85 per cent and the project had failed.

Labor’s already tried and failed to deliver the NBN. Labor can’t be trusted a second time.


The Coalition is rolling out the nbn sooner

●       The Turnbull Government is rolling out better broadband across Australia in the fastest and most affordable way with completion expected by 2020.

●       The nbn rollout is on track, on budget and ahead of schedule.

●       Under the Coalition, the nbn is is connecting more active users every month than Labor connected during its entire time in Government (more than 61,000 new active services per month, compared to 51,000 in total at the time of the 2013 election).

●       Under the Coalition, all Australians will be connected to the nbn by 2020.

●       Under the Coalition, nbn has hit every rollout target we’ve set.

●       The nbn has now passed more than 2.5 million premises nationwide.

●       The nbn now has more than one million paying customers.

●       By the end of June 2016, a total of 2.6 million premises will be able to connect to the nbn.

●       The nbn will have passed 5.4 million premises by the end of June 2017, increasing to     9 million premises by the end of June 2018.

●       The Coalition has prioritised underserved areas which need improved broadband the most.

The Coalition’s nbn is more affordable

●       The Coalition’s Multi-Technology Mix nbn is more affordable than Labor’s gold-plated version, requiring peak funding of $49 billion and a public equity limit of $29.5 billion.

●       The Coalition’s faster, more cost-effective rollout will not make households pay more for their broadband bills.

●       The Coalition’s nbn will provide download speeds of 25 Mbps to all premises and 50 Mbps to 90% of fixed-line premises in Australia.

●       The Coalition’s nbn offers broadband speeds that are much faster than what the majority of users are purchasing. Fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) delivers speeds up to 100 Mbps and has an average download speed of 70 Mbps.

●       Consumers aren’t willing to pay for Labor’s high-price nbn. Four out of five users are purchasing nbn plans with speeds of 25Mbps or less.

●       Labor’s FTTP network costs $4,400 per premise to connect to the nbn. In contrast, the Coalition’s FTTN network costs $2,300 per premise, and Hybrid-Fibre-Coax (HFC) technology costs $1,800 per premise.