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Tuesday, 7 February 2017
Page: 171

NBN in Tasmania

(Question No. 52)

Ms Keay asked the Minister representing the Minister for Regional Communications, in writing, on 7 November 2016:

In respect of the Australian Government's election commitment to put $18.5 million towards the construction of fibre-to-the-node NBNTM technology in the towns of (a) Queenstown, (b) Rosebery, and (c) Zeehan, in Tasmania (with an additional $4.5 million of assistance from the Tasmanian Government), will the Australian Government's commitment be honoured; if not, why not; if so, (i) when it be delivered, (ii) can the Minister provide details of discussions between NBNTM and the Tasmanian Government on the delivery of this project, (iii) does the Tasmanian Government remain committed, and (iv) what action will NBNTM take if the existing copper network that will carry the NBNTM to homes and businesses in these towns is in such a state of disrepair that would prevent the delivery of fibre-to-the-node.

Mr Fletcher: The Minister for Regional Communications has provided the following answer to the honourable Member's question:

(a, b, c) In addition to Queenstown, Rosebery and Zeehan, the Coalition's election commitment also includes the rollout of fixed wireless to the town of Strahan. The in-kind support from the Tasmanian Government is included as part of the Government's $18.5 million election commitment.

(i) There has been no change to the Government's commitment to rollout fixed line to the towns of Queenstown, Rosebery and Zeehan and fixed wireless broadband to Strahan. Construction resources are expected to move to the area around mid-2017.

(ii) NBN Co Ltd (the company) and the Tasmanian Government are making the necessary arrangements to ensure that services are provided as soon as practicable.

(iii) The Tasmanian Government has committed $4.5 million of in-kind support to the project.

(iv) As at 1 December, 1.358 million households across Australia could connect to high speed broadband over the company's fixed line network. As with existing premises connected to fixed line, the company will progressively take ownership of the copper network and undertake any remediation if necessary.