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Tuesday, 7 February 2012
Page: 185


(Question No. 651)

Mr Fletcher asked the Prime Minister, in writing, on 11 October 2011:

Can the Prime Minister explain the apparent discrepancy between her statements to the House (Hansard, 18 November 2010, page 3018) and on ABC Radio (25 November 2010), indicating that a national broadband model with retail price competition results in cheaper prices for consumers; and the statements by NBN Co. Limited (NBN Co. Discussion Paper: Introducing NBN Co's Special Access Undertaking, July 2011, page 26) indicating that the system will result in current retail prices for broadband services being maintained.

Ms Gillard: I am advised that the answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The National Broadband Network (NBN) will support increased retail competition, which is expected to result in lower prices for consumer broadband services and drive increased usage by consumers.

A number of retail service providers have already released their NBN service plans. These compare favourably with existing ADSL plans, while delivering superior performance and the option to upgrade to speeds much faster than those available on the copper network.

In relation to the NBN Co Limited (NBN Co) Special Access Undertaking discussion paper, page 26 discusses NBN wholesale (not retail) prices.